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Transatlantic dialogue on data protection continues

24 October 2018
by eub2 -- last modified 24 October 2018

EuroCommerce, jointly with its US counterpart the National Retail Federation (NRF), and EU and US regulators meet today to discuss the future of the Privacy Shield and other data transfer frameworks in a side-event to the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners, providing perspectives on the future of the transatlantic framework and its importance for both EU and U.S. consumers and businesses.


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Christian Verschueren, EuroCommerce Director-General said:

"Ambitious trade relationships and global supply chains are impossible without free flow of data. The Privacy Shield is an important tool that gives US companies a privileged, unrestricted access to the data of their European customers and employees. This is a competitive advantage, and the benefits of this arrangement are clear to both the EU and the US. However, progress achieved in building this framework is slow, and trust is fragile. Therefore, regular exchanges, such as the one today, are important for continuing our mutual efforts in building solid and pragmatic frameworks for data protection and data exchange."

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into force this spring, has raised the bar for compliance not only for the EU companies, but globally. This has come with the cost and significant compliance efforts for both small and large retailers but it has also provided a new approach for building consumer trust. Retailers with stores, websites, mobile apps and other digital platforms serving consumers face new compliance standards, increased liability for violations and more stringent enforcement.

"These collaborative efforts by the retail industry on both sides of the Atlantic are a first step to ensuring global alignment on responsible data management. This is essential for keeping the consumer's trust, a cornerstone of retail's business. By working together with our American partners, we will shape global standards for data protection", Verschueren added.

The exchange today is a part of the regular dialogue on data protection issues that EuroCommerce and NRF has maintained for the last three years. The collaboration has resulted with a joint document setting out the Retail Approach to Implementing Critical Elements of the GDPR. On Wednesday, EuroCommerce and NRF will hold their third annual retailer exchange, with retail executives from both the United States and Europe discussing GDPR, the proposed European ePrivacy Regulation, and other privacy issues.

EuroCommerce is the voice for six million retail, wholesale, and other trading companies. Its members include national commerce federations in 31 countries, Europe's 27 leading retail and wholesale companies, and federations representing specific sectors of commerce.

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