On 27 July, eBay Inc. and PostNL, a Dutch postal & logistics company, co-sponsored a breakfast debate on parcel delivery and cross-border e-commerce in the EU. The event was hosted by Polish Member of the European Parliament Róża Thun. Ms. Thun, a champion and supporter of online SMEs, welcomed participants by discussing the importance of cross-border trade for the success and growth of small online retailers, and highlighted the challenges buyers and sellers face in this area.
Her welcome was followed by a panel discussion which included a variety of speakers, including eBay’s Director of Cross-Border Trade, Chris Webster; Paul Overdijk, Director of Strategy at PostNL; and European Commission official in charge of online and postal services, Werner Stengg. The breakfast generated discussion among panelists and participants emphasizing the importance of cross-border trade becoming aligned with today’s growing online market. More specifically, the debate focused on the need for more seamless and less costly shipping solutions at a time when the postal sector transitions from a communication network to a distribution network. All parties agreed on the need to encourage commercial collaboration and interoperability before any legislation is put forward. The breakfast event provided a great forum for comments and suggestions ahead of the launch of a consultation on parcel delivery.