Automotive suppliers welcome objectives of the Data Act and stress the need for sector-specific rules on access to data

The European Commission is gathering views to help shape the new Data Act. This legislative initiative is part of the ‘European strategy for data’—published in 2020—and aims to create a fair data economy by ensuring access to and use of data for legitimate purposes, including in business-to-business and business-to-government situations in the European Union.

Automotive suppliers are rapidly advancing mobility technology, with vehicles generating and collecting ever greater quantities of data to operate and monitor systems such as system diagnostics and route planning. Data can provide significant benefits to drivers, passengers, and other road users and is also valuable to an expanding market that can make use of it, offer new services to consumers, or improve upon existing repair and maintenance services.

Bringing together a wide number of automotive supply companies, CLEPA has submitted their views on the impact assessment for this legislative plan to the European Commission and is preparing a response to the more detailed questionnaire currently accessible until 3 September. The association supports the initiative of the Commission and the ambition of creating a robust regulatory framework for data sharing and its benefits.

Automotive suppliers endorse the Commission’s recognition that business-to-business data sharing currently may host stakeholders with stronger, unbalanced negotiating power thanks to their privileged position in the data flow, where they might impose unfair terms and conditions to the detriment of other market players. That is why CLEPA supports the Commission’s findings regarding the need for certain guidance for contracts to mediate between market players.

Following the multifaceted nature of data, the Data Act is conceived as a horizontal regulation. CLEPA supports this approach but warns that the automotive market’s specificities require sector-specific rules on access to in-vehicle data and resources. A revision of the type-approval framework for vehicles to open up car data-based services is expected towards the end of this year. On their own, and not complemented by sector-specific legislation, horizontal initiatives like the Data Act would only add complexity and lead to less clarity.

For further information, CLEPA’s feedback to the impact assessment can be found here:

Next steps 

The deadline for the public consultation ends on 3 September. The Commission is expected to publish its proposal for a Data Act by the end of 2021. The proposed revision of type-approval rules on access to data is expected at the end of the year or beginning of the next. 


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