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ACM will focus on energy, the digital economy and sustainability in 2023

In 2023, the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) will focus in particular on the energy market. That means stricter regulation of energy companies. ACM will also publish more market data to make the energy market more transparent. In addition, it will focus its regulation on the digital economy and on the sustainability transition of the Dutch economy. These are ACM’s focus areas for 2023.

Martijn Snoep, Chairman of the Board of ACM, explains: “These times require robust regulation by an agile market authority. We are facing major challenges in many markets. That calls for new initiatives to protect people better. However, there is no one solution that will work forever, so we must constantly adapt ourselves within the boundaries that have been set for us.”

The energy transition for everyone

ACM believes it is important to use its regulation to help accelerate the energy transition, but also to prevent vulnerable consumers in particular from getting into difficulty due to major shocks in the energy market. ACM will therefore tighten its regulation of energy suppliers. Starting in February, ACM will publish a monthly energy monitor in order to promote competition among energy suppliers and to make the market more transparent. New rules on early-termination fees will be introduced so that energy suppliers start offering permanent contracts again.

To accelerate the energy transition, ACM will encourage energy firms to use the grid more efficiently. In addition, new guidelines will be introduced so that ACM will be able to keep a closer watch on the system operators’ investment plans.

The digital economy

ACM will focus on combating deception and manipulation by large online companies so that everyone will be able to reap the benefits offered by the digital economy. For example, ACM will pay closer attention to the way in which online retailers influence consumer choices by using dark patterns or fake reviews. In addition, combating abuses by firms with key positions in the digital economy is also high on the agenda, in part because of new European rules set to come into force next year. For example, ACM will focus on preventing firms that wish to do business online from getting into difficulty as a result of platform companies or IT service suppliers not playing by the rules.

Making the economy more sustainable

To contribute to a more sustainable economy, ACM will focus on preventing consumers from being misled by vague and misleading information on the sustainability aspects of goods or services. ACM calls on the Dutch legislature to introduce better rules for certification labels. ACM will also help firms that wish to collaborate in order to realize certain sustainability goals stay within the statutory parameters.

See also