Anti-competitive activities by Big Tech was one of 12 economic subjects that the Jayant Sinha-headed committee discussed. ht

Parliamentary panel on finance debates data use policies by Big Tech

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance, led by Bharatiya Janata Party’s Jayant Sinha, met representatives of digital economy businesses on Tuesday to discuss business models as part of its study on competitive practices in the sector.

The panel had a “constructive and friendly” discussion about the digital economy, the opportunities created for small businesses, the investments of these new-age companies and their revenue streams with company representatives, said a person familiar with the discussions, speaking on condition of anonymity. The company will have to provide written answers to specific questions at a later date, he added.

The interaction with representatives of major technology companies will help the panel learn about “anti-competitive practices of major technology companies,” according to information on the Lok Sabha website, and is one of 12 key economic topics the committee is looking into. detailed study.

The wide-ranging and detailed recommendations made by the Sinha-led panel on bankruptcy reforms last year formed the basis for proposals to amend the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, which are being finalised.

An email query sent to the panel seeking comment on the story remained unanswered as of press time.

Meta Platforms Inc., Microsoft Corp., Google LLC and Apple Inc. declined to comment for this story.

The committee discussed issues such as the profitability of e-commerce platforms, the scale of investment, data collected by social media networks from users, advertising on social media platforms and the types of business opportunities that e-commerce platforms create for small businesses, the person said.

“The revenue model and advertising business of big tech has been the focus of a number of CCI investigations,” said Prasanto K. Roy, a technology policy consultant.

Many major technology companies are under the lens of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) for alleged anti-competitive practices. The investigation includes alleged ad distortion and abuse of dominance by the search engine, the promotion of brands owned by an e-commerce platform that is supposed to be neutral, and the phone maker allegedly abusing its dominant position as an app marketplace provider and forcing developers to use its own payment system.

When big tech companies are handed over to regulators, things don’t go well for them, Roy said. “A parliamentary panel can help provide some balance. This will also help Parliament scrutinize competition law for adequacy and implementation,” he said.

Policymakers are exploring the need for a new Digital Markets Act or the introduction of certain data collection and use guidelines in the Competition Act to govern businesses.

Sanjit
Sanjit

I am Sanjit Gupta. I have completed my BMS then MMS both in marketing. I even did a diploma in computer software and Digital Marketing.

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