The National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia adopted amendments to the Law on Electronic Commerce

On 22 July 2019, the National Assembly of the Republic of the Serbia adopted Bill amending and modifying the Law on Electronic Commerce (“Law”), published in the Official Gazette No. 52/2019 dated 22 July, 2019, effective eight days after publishing in the Official Gazette on 30 July, 2019.

The Law is primarily aimed at specifying formulation of certain provisions, which are now in line with the EU Directive on Electronic Commerce (“Directive”). The terms that may have created certain ambiguities have been changed and specified, of which the most significant change was in the definition of an information society service provider, which extends who can be an information society service provider. Definition of the consumer is changed an is now in line with the definition contained in the Law on Trade, while the definition of a commercial message has been amended in accordance with the relevant provision of the Directive. The provision has been added to the Law regulating the freedom of cross-border service providing and conditions under which the freedom can be limited, the application of this article is waiting for Serbia’s accession to the European Union. In accordance with the Directive, a provision on commercial message has been amended, and the information society service provider is now obliged to regularly check and accept the cancellation of the consent of a person who does not wish to receive a commercial message anymore. The Law now provides exceptions for contracts which cannot be concluded in electronic form, particularly contracts which prohibition is prescribed by lex specialis, or contract for which the obligation for solemnization is prescribed. Amendments also provide the obligation for information society service provider, which provides service of transmission of electronic messages by user, to keep user’s data at least for 30 days after the termination of provided service, particularly user’s IP address. The Law also introduces some changes concerning the supervision  of the Law’s application, but the application of certain parts of this provision will start after Serbia’s accession to the European Union.

The amendments to the Law were carried out as a continuation of the process of legal harmonization with the European legislation, that is, EU’s Directive. Although the existing law largely adopted provisions of the Directive, there was a need for more precise regulation of certain norms, their incorporation into the market and legal framework of the Republic of Serbia, as well as for further harmonization with the Directive itself. The main goal of the Law is certainly the organization of the services marketplace, especially the services of the information society service providers as an increasingly important segment of the Serbia’s economy.