The government will look to stabilise its e-commerce firm ONDC and address the data privacy concerns before bringing a proposed e-commerce policy, according to an official source.
In June 2021, the Department of Consumer Affairs under the Food and Consumer Affairs Ministry released a draft set of rules that aims to tighten the governance of e-commerce platforms.
On the other side, the Department of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) under the Commerce and Industry Ministry is also framing a national e-commerce policy. A couple of ministries are involved in the policy making as it lies in the jurisdiction of other legislations.
“We have already launched the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) to help small retailers. It has gone quite well. We have raised funds for ONDC. Once this gets stabilised and democratised, it will be easy to formalise the proposed e-commerce policy,” the source said.
There is also an element of data privacy in e-commerce, which Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology is looking into it and working on a law, the source said.
The proposed e-commerce policy will get finalised when all the concerned ministries are in perfect “alignment”, the source added.
The work is in progress and no deadline has been set as of now, the source added.
The e-commerce policy is expected to impact the Indian e-commerce market, which is projected to touch USD 188 billion in 2025 from USD 64 billion in 2020, with growing consumer preference to buy on the digital marketplace, according to a FICCI report.
The Department of Consumer Affairs is planning to come out with quality standards for checking fake and deceptive reviews on e-commerce platforms.A committee is already reviewing an Indian standard (IS 20488:2018) identified by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) for collection, moderation and publication of online reviews, another source said.
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