Updated: October 2019
Non-European technology providers with giant capitalisation and massive market power in diverse digital
services markets (so-called “BigTechs”) are currently strengthening their positions on the European market,
leveraging opportunities brought by new technologies and the creation of digital platforms. Whilst those
platforms and innovations have brought about
numerous benefits, their rapid growth also
generates new challenges and concerns, such as
the risk of monopolisation of the internet
economy in the hands of few (non-European)
players, as well as data protection and privacy
There are issues that need to be taken seriously
through a holistic policy debate, but especially
taking into account the potential impact of the
expansion of these platforms into offering financial
services, or other services that cross-use
consumers’ financial data. Europe has to ensure
that the European economy and European
corporations, including in financial services,
are equipped with the right framework to be
competitive and innovative in order for Europe
to play a relevant role in the global data-driven
digital economy. It should, for instance, be ensured that enterprises can cooperate more closely in the digital
field on both national and European level.
In relation to a potential open data economy – namely, access to and use of consumer data by corporations
– ESBG advocates for a level playing field between incumbent players, smaller and newer players as well as
larger “BigTechs”, in terms of both regulation and supervision.
Cases of BigTech companies denying access to their platforms or software/hardware-interfaces towards the
banking industry occur. Such behaviour illustrates the necessity of a reformed legal framework to establish and
ensure a level playing field in digital financial services.
A level playing field between stakeholders, and
the principle of “same business – same risk, same
rules and supervision” should be respected in
every policy debate and regulatory framework.
That includes a holistic and horizontal approach
towards the data economy, where access to data
and data sharing are seen in a broader context –
beyond financial services and new players such
as FinTech startups of international technology
giants that are entering European markets.