UK gets fair competition commitments from Meta and Amazon

3 Nov 2023

Image: © sharafmaksumov/

The CMA said these commitments will prevent either company from using data to give themselves an ‘unfair competitive advantage’ on their marketplaces.

Meta and Amazon have sent voluntary commitments to ensure fair competition on their retail platforms, in response to investigations by a UK regulator.

The country’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said these commitments will benefit both sellers and customers, by improving competition from two of the biggest digital players in the UK.

The CMA said Amazon has committed to give independent sellers a “fair chance” to be featured in the ‘Buy Box’ section of the Amazon Marketplace. The regulator claims that most sales on the marketplace take place from this feature.

Amazon also said it will not use Marketplace data it obtains from third-party sellers to give itself an “unfair competitive advantage”. The tech giant will also allow sellers to negotiate their own delivery rates directly with independent providers on Prime.

In July 2022, the CMA opened an investigation into Amazon over concerns that its marketplace practices were negatively impacting consumers and sellers in the country.

Meta signed a similar commitment to not exploit the data it receives from businesses on Facebook Marketplace, to prevent giving itself an unfair competitive advantage.

Competitors of Facebook Marketplace that advertise on Meta platforms will also be able to ‘opt out’ of having their data be used to improve Facebook Marketplace.

The CMA opened an investigation into Meta in June 2021, due to concerns that the company was abusing its dominant market position and affecting trade in the UK.

Ann Pope, the CMA’s senior director for antitrust enforcement, said Amazon’s commitment will help thousands of independent UK sellers “compete on a level playing field”, while Meta will be unable to “distort competition”.

“Having assessed the commitments and the feedback received, including from sellers, advertisers and customers, we believe both sets of commitments address the specific competition concerns we had here in the UK,” Pope said.

The CMA said it will monitor the compliance both tech giants make with these commitments and will intervene if it suspects a breach.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic