For a detailed explanation of this subject, we refer to previous articles on our website, which
you can consult by clicking here and
1. What goods and services are involved?
- goods delivered in a Member State to which the trader offers delivery or are collected at a
location agreed with the customer;
- electronically supplied services such as cloud services, data storage and website
- services such as hotel accommodation and car rental, which are received by the customer in
the country where the trader is active.
2. Offering goods and services through your website? What should you take into account?
If you as a trader sell goods or services via your website, an app or any other online
interface, you should check whether:
- It is freely accessible from all EU member states;
- Your sales conditions do not differ depending on the nationality, place of residence or
location (except if there is an objective justification for this);
- the prices do not differ depending on nationality, place of residence or location (unless
there is an objective justification for this);
- the payment options do not differ depending on nationality, residence or location;
- It is possible to fill in your order form from any EU Member State (eg enough boxes to fill
in post and phone number);
- your website, if it leads to another version of the website than the one that the customer
had chosen, still offers the chance to stay on the chosen website or return to it;
- your website refuses to sell to buyers from other member states
exception is made to this in case the blocking or limitation of access or transit is necessary to
ensure compliance with a legal requirement laid down in EU law or in the law of a Member State in
accordance with EU law, where you are operating. In that case, you must explain clearly and
precisely why this is necessary. This explanation must be provided in the language of the website
that the customer first tried to access.
3. Restrictions prohibited in case of passive sales
In competition law, a distinction is made between active and passive sales. There is active
sales when retailers are actively targeting customers buyers and passive sales when sales take
place in response to an unsolicited order.
The right of traders to limit active sales is not affected. This is part of the commercial
The regulation, however, prohibits the imposition of restrictions in the case of passive sales.
For example, in case of online sales, its distributors can no longer be imposed to deliver goods
and services only in certain countries. Such contractual terms shall be automatically void.
Traders remain entitled to choose not to deliver their goods and services outside their own
Member State where they are active. It goes without saying that no trader should be obliged to
deliver goods across borders in another Member State if he does not otherwise offer his customers
the possibility of such delivery.
Traders will continue to have the right to offer goods or services in different Member States or
to certain groups of customers, by means of targeted offers and different general conditions of
access, including through the setting up country-specific websites, when a customer wishes to enjoy
these offers and general access conditions, provided that there is no discrimination based on
nationality, place of residence or place of establishment.
Access conditions for other reasons such as membership of a certain association or contributions
made to the trader are also allowed as long as they are not related to nationality, place of
residence or place of establishment.
Traders are still free to offer, on a non-discriminatory basis, different conditions, including
different prices, in different points of sale, such as shops and websites, or to make specific
offers only to a specific territory within a Member State.
Services related to copyright-protected content or works in an intangible form - such as music
streaming services and e-books are excluded from the scope of the regulation. But this will be
subject to a review by the European Commission.
Other services such as financial and audio-visual services, transport, health care and social
services are also excluded.