Nasscom Recommends Strengthening Existing Framework Before Introducing Digital Competition Bill

Nasscom calls for further discussions on the Digital Competition Bill and suggests strengthening the current regulatory framework.

  • Nasscom calls for further discussions on the Digital Competition Bill and suggests strengthening the current regulatory framework.
  • The IT industry body emphasizes the need for more analysis on ex-ante regulations for Big Tech firms.
  • Nasscom suggests capacity building for the Competition Commission of India and other regulatory bodies.

Nasscom, the IT industry body, has called for further discussions on the proposed Digital Competition Bill and the report by the Committee on Digital Competition Law (CDCL). Nasscom suggests strengthening the existing regulatory framework before introducing new legislation.

In its submission to the ministry of corporate affairs, Nasscom highlighted the need for more thinking and analysis regarding ex-ante regulations. These regulations would serve as pre-emptive measures for Big Tech firms, also known as Systematically Significant Digital Enterprises (SSDEs). Nasscom appreciates the CDCL’s intention to address specific harms but warns of high error costs associated with ex-ante regulations.

Nasscom recommends that the government conduct focused studies and consultations to review the provisions of the Digital Competition Bill. The IT body also calls for capacity building for the Competition Commission of India (CCI) and the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal to handle the additional regulatory burden. An informal guidance scheme, similar to one created by the Securities and Exchange Board of India in 2003, is also suggested to help SSDEs with conduct requirements.

Ashish Aggarwal, Vice President and Head of Public Policy at Nasscom, emphasized that any ex-ante regulations should be rooted in the realities of Indian markets. He noted that recent regulatory developments, such as the strengthening of the Competition Act and the enactment of the DPDP Act, might address some issues highlighted in the CDCL report without needing a new law.