PARIS — In France, Amazon will have to increase its book delivery costs to at least €3.
The French government announced on Friday that it is approving the telecommunications and postal regulator’s proposal to impose a €3 delivery charge for books when the order is less than €35. Arcep has been asked to make a proposal, as part of a law passed last year and specifically targeting Amazon.
Policymakers aimed to protect brick-and-mortar stores from competition with Amazon by preventing the e-commerce giant from offering virtually free delivery for book purchases.
“The rate of three euros, commonly applied for the delivery of other products, does not appear to be a dissuasive element for buyers, and the threshold of 35 euros encourages the grouping of orders, a virtuous gesture in terms of ecological transition” , the economy ministers said. and culture said in a statement.
The French government will draft an executive decree to codify the threshold and notify the text to the European Commission. It will become applicable once Brussels has provided its comments.
An Amazon spokesperson directed POLITICO to the company’s contribution to the ARCEP consultation in May. “The introduction of minimum shipping costs would have a major inflationary impact, increasing the cost of books sold online and therefore negatively impacting the purchasing power of French readers, especially those living in rural areas who do not ‘have no immediate access to bookstores and have no alternatives,’ according to Amazon.
“Nearly half of the books (46%) purchased on Amazon are purchased by residents of cities with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants,” added the e-commerce giant.
This article has been updated.