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The Ministry Of Industry And Trade Published A Draft Strategy For The Development Of Internet Commerce Until 2025 For Discussion

 The threshold of duty-free purchases in foreign online stores will be phased down to 200 euros, the Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov said in an interview with Rossiyskaya Gazeta .

This is one of the proposals of the Strategy for the Development of Electronic Commerce until 2025, the draft of which the Ministry of Industry and Trade published on Wednesday. The document also presupposes the lifting of restrictions on the sale of alcohol and food products via the Internet, the introduction of the "digital reputation" of the seller and the buyer, the simplification of transactions in electronic form, the certification of electronic trading platforms (marketplaces) and their integration with the FTS, FTS and Russian Export Center systems, logistics, which will allow any store for reasonable money to deliver goods within three days to 90 percent of consumers in Russia.

Denis Valentinovich, what volume should Internet commerce achieve by 2025?

Denis Manturov: Now this segment, according to expert estimates, takes only 3-4 percent of the total retail turnover. In Western countries, this share is an order of magnitude higher - 10-20 percent - data for Britain, Germany, China, Finland, and the United States. The Russian market has a lot to grow both quantitatively and qualitatively. Considering that this is only a stage of formation, we are planning to achieve world standards by 2025.

At the same time, we propose other criteria for assessing the achievement of the tasks stated in the Strategy. For example, the share of retail stores that use the Internet channel in sales, the number of sellers engaged in e-commerce, including small and medium-sized businesses, and others.

Catching up other countries in terms of fees on Internet parcels will?

Denis Manturov: In the interests of Russian market participants, the threshold of duty-free import will be gradually reduced. So, now the draft decision of the Eurasian intergovernmental council fixes the norm on lowering the threshold twice since January 1, 2019: without paying 30 percent of the customs duty it will be possible to order goods in foreign online stores whose value does not exceed 500 euros per month. In another year, from 2020, the threshold of duty-free import will be reduced to 200 euros. So far, in Russia it is one of the highest in the world - 1000 euros.

At the same time, it is necessary to search for a reasonable mutually beneficial balance, which will take into account both the interests of national producers and the foreign trade market. Now e-commerce is becoming one of the main engines of the globalization of the world economy. Experts predict that e-commerce platforms in the future will join the supply and consumption chains regardless of geographic location, and such a scheme will become the main way of conducting international trade.

E-commerce threatens the existence of offline players?

Denis Manturov: Under the conditions of digitalization, many industries are undergoing changes, otherwise they will simply lose their competitiveness. This applies to the sphere of trade and services. Now we see a positive trend: investors are investing heavily in innovative start-ups. An example is a robot, through which it will be possible to order dishes remotely via a smartphone.

But this definitely does not mean that our citizens will exchange cafes and restaurants for a robotic kitchen. Different formats of trade play different roles in our life. And often complement each other, creating a single and extremely interesting landscape. The more formats are presented, the higher the standard of living and the more comfortable the environment.

What needs to be changed in the system of protecting the rights of customers online stores?

Denis Manturov: It is necessary to build on the need to establish equal requirements for offline and online trading. This also applies to the issue of the return of goods, regardless of the method of purchase: directly from the seller or via the Internet.

We are ready to support the idea of ​​the business community to create a "single window" on the basis of Rospotrebnadzor, which can be accessed if there are problems with the purchase of counterfeit goods in the store. This will make it possible to handle complaints of consumers more quickly. As part of the pre-trial settlement of disputes, the material and time costs for their resolution will be reduced.

Terms of return to the online store will be the same as when buying offline

Particular attention should be paid to ensuring the protection of the rights of Russian consumers of foreign online stores. In the Strategy, this direction is defined as one of the priority.

With whom is the project agreed?

Denis Manturov: The published project already represents the result of joint work with the Russian Association of Electronic Communications, the Association of Internet Trade Companies, the National Association of Distance Trade, the Association of Electronic Trading Sites. Their representatives participated in the development of conceptual vectors for the development of the Russian e-commerce market in the perspective of the next decade, so the document was created taking into account all the realities of the market. Subsequently, we propose to make it a separate section of the Strategy for the Development of Trade in Russia until 2025. This is absolutely logical, since the online format is part of the overall system of trade relations, and the tasks of its development should be solved systematically, outside of the industry.

Now the project is placed for wide public discussion on the Internet, and we are counting on prompt feedback from both market players and citizens.

What were the objectives of the strategy development?

Denis Manturov: First of all, we took into account the specifics of the format, which provides for extensive use of digital technologies, the absence of direct contact between the seller and the buyer, and other factors. In this sphere, it is necessary to create special conditions for development without placing Internet commerce in the "vice" of numerous norms and prohibitions. This is important, because one of the main reasons for the growth of online sales is precisely the absence of excessive regulation.

This requires clarifying existing legal norms, improving the institution of consumer protection. However, no new laws that would put the online market in difficult conditions can not be tolerated. The most correct way is to make changes to the legislation where it is really necessary, and in some cases to remove existing restrictions. This includes, inter alia, prohibitions on the online sale of jewelry, medicines, alcohol.

Minpromtorg offers to consider the foreign experience of direct electronic payments between legal entities without resorting to a bank account. Companies will be able to pay by means of payment cards with the use of preferential commission fees and the choice of a currency of settlements, which makes it possible to exclude "double conversion" of currencies. The system of non-bank accounts also became widespread in the world, which allows to reduce the costs of servicing payment transactions and guarantee the solvency of the customer.

Source: Rossiiskaya Gazeta

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