The European Council has finalised its position on the directive setting out new rules relating to the supply of digital content and digital services, acknowledging it as a priority for the Digital Single Market. The makings of the proposed directive were initially presented by the European Commission in late 2015 as part of the move towards a connected digital single market. On 8 June 2017, the European Council adopted its position on the scope of the proposed directive, the remedies for lack of supply and non-conformity, supplier liability and burden of proof restrictions.

The proposed directive relates to business to consumer contracts covering (1) data produced and supplied in digital form (2) cloud storage services (3) services relating to the sharing of data and (4) any durable medium used as a carrier of digital content. Currently the supply of digital content throughout the EU is regulated by the Consumer Rights Directive, Unfair Terms Directive and the e-Commerce Directive.

What next? Negotiations with the European Parliament, which are expected to start in autumn 2017, will take place allowing the European Parliament to review the proposal. Once both European Parliament and Council have approved the final text of the proposed directive, it is jointly signed by the Presidents and Secretaries General of both institutions. After signature, the text will be published in the Official Journal and become official.