The 2011 Annual Report for the European Consumer Centres Network (ECC-Net) indicates that a service that focuses on providing answers to cross-border consumer purchase questions is not only necessary but also in great demand. Since the network was established in 2005, a total of 416,000 consumers have received information on purchases made from other Member States or help with processing their complaint.
The European Consumer Centres Network operates in the 27 EU Member States, as well as in Norway and Iceland. The network’s mission is to offer advice and expertise in consumer questions related to cross-border purchases and when necessary to provide settlement and arbitration assistance to consumers in disputes when dealing with traders located in another EU Member State.
Transport services and purchases on the web key topics
In 2011, the majority of complaints dealt with transport services (32%, of which 20% were related to air travel). Over half of complaints dealt with purchases made on the web. In addition to traditional purchase of goods, consumers predominantly use the web to purchase flights, rent vehicles and reserve accommodation for their trips abroad.
In 2011, the EEC-Net was able to negotiate a resolution with traders in 41% of complaints. Additionally, processing of 13% of complaints was continued by transferring them to another authority such as an alternative arbitration body, a national supervisory body or a court.
The annual report contains information on the operations of the European Consumer Centres Network. The report includes examples of disputes that each European Consumer Centre Network member has reached a resolution in through negotiations.
A summary of the report in Finnish
European Consumer Centres Network 2011 Annual Report (in English)
A press release on the publication of the report 6 June 2012 (in English)