Sharing Economy: The View from the Visegrad Group

The purpose of the conference is to discuss these issues among relevant stakeholders from the V4 countries (business representatives, national/regional politicians and representatives of public authorities, and representatives of the research institutes) and Brussels’ insiders (representatives of the European Commission, MEPs), in order to understand mutual needs and options in hand.

The conference will also round up a year-long project providing various stakeholders’ views on current challenges to the single market. The policy paper is based on four in-depth workshop discussions with representatives of the chambers of commerce, consumer protection organizations, public administration and media from the V4. The project focused on further integration of the V4 markets and limits to internal market functioning in Central Europe.

Background

The digital era has opened brand new possibilities in direct and instant matching of supply and demand in a way that had not been possible in the past. The so-called sharing economy stretches from platforms for car sharing, dinner hosting and provision of accommodation to crowd-funding and real estate market. Can this be a technology bringing the next wave of economic growth in the EU? What are the social, economic, environmental and fiscal changes that may result from these innovations?

The first results of the public consultations on online platforms and sharing economy were published in March 2016. The European Commission is expected (by mid-2016) to provide guidelines for member states on how to apply existing rules to the sharing economy platforms. This may help to remove some uncertainty over the rights and obligations of clients and providers that use these platforms and make the internal market a more even playing field for all.

Are there any specific economic, social or regulatory aspects which influence operation of the sharing economy and P2P platforms in the V4 region? How is the role of the European Commission´s guidelines assessed by stakeholders in the V4 region? Are the existing rules sufficient or does the current situation of the sharing economy in the EU require a specific regulatory approach?

Outcomes

Expected outcomes are twofold: better understanding of the V4 region needs in regards to sharing economy issues in anticipation of the guidelines by the European Commission expected in mid-2016, and, on the other hand, better knowledge of the Commission and European Parliament’s aims and intentions on the side of national stakeholders. The conference will be complemented by a policy paper summing up the recommendations.

INTRODUCTION: V4 Perspective on the Internal Market

The introductory presentation will round up a year-long project providing various stakeholders’ views on current challenges to the single market. The policy paper is based on four in-depth workshop discussions with representatives of the chambers of commerce, consumer protection organizations, public administration and media from the V4. The project focused on further integration of the V4 markets and limits to internal market functioning in Central Europe. The common regulatory focus on sharing economy platforms is suggested among possible goals for common V4 policies.

Presentation:

  • Kryštof Kruliš, Research Fellow, AMO

PANEL I: Sharing Economy and the Internal Market

Questions:

Why, how and to what extent should the segment of sharing economy be regulated, and at what level (EU, state, local)? Do we need a common definition of sharing economy in the EU? Is such a definition needed for users of the sharing economy platforms to have basic legal certainty?

  • Dita Charanzová, MEP (ALDE), European Parliament
  • Róbert Chovanculiak, Analyst, INESS
  • Janusz Cieszyński, Advisor, Political Cabinet, Ministry of Economic Development of Poland
  • Neil Kay, Senior Policy Officer, DG GROW, E3 – Digitalisation of the Single Market, European Commission
  • Jan Poruba, Policy Officer, Department of European Affairs and Internal Market, Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic

PANEL II: Sharing Economy and Tourism in the V4 region

Questions:

How can sharing economy change tourism in the V4 region? What are the benefits and/or risks for providers and for users? How do the sharing economy platforms influence traditional services in tourism?

  • Mihály Bajnóczi, Second Secretary, Competition Unit, Permanent Representation of Hungary to the EU
  • Marek Harbul’ák, President, Slovak Tourism Association
  • Ana-Claudia Tapardel, MEP (S&D), European Parliament

DATE
Wednesday, May 25, 2016, 9:00-12:00

LOCATION
European Parliament,  Altiero Spinelli Building, Rue Wiertz 60, Brussels, Room: ASP 5 G-1

WORKING LANGUAGE
English

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