On 7 October 2020, Oxera hosted a virtual round-table discussion with senior representatives from regulators (CMA, Ofcom, ICO), online platforms, the start-up community and academics, on the future of digital regulation in the UK. The discussion centred on the recent call for information from the UK’s Digital Markets Taskforce (DMT).
Our event asked three broad questions:
- Defining Strategic Market Status (SMS): How should the regime define a firm as having SMS? How will SMS relate to existing concepts, such as dominance, significant market power (SMP) or economic dependence?
- Scope of the regime: What sectors of the digital economy will be in scope of any new regulatory regime? How will the regime differentiate between issues arising as a result of market power (or SMS) in specific markets, relative to broader issues such as behavioural biases or information asymmetries?
- Lessons from other sectors: What are the relevant lessons from other sectors (telecoms, financial services) regarding the scope, proportionality and effectiveness of sector-specific regulation?
We had a lively and insightful discussion on these issues under the Chatham House rule. A variety of views were expressed and discussed and some common ground started to emerge in response to these questions.
We would like to thank all participants for their contributions during the event and we wish the DMT the best of luck in the months ahead as they finalise their recommendations.
A post event briefing note summarising the key messages that emerged from the discussion can be downloaded here