Over the past years, we have witnessed the rise of eCommerce as a global platform rapidly changing the traditional retail landscape and creating an evolved and unique shopping experience. It is radically changing the way business is conducted, leading to the creation of new business models, and is impacting all areas of economic activity in one way or another. It enables local enterprises to tap into other markets at relatively low cost. As broadband internet penetration rates continue to increase, new trends continue to evolve. The rapid uptake of smartphone devices coupled with increased mobile internet broadband subscriptions is making connectivity an integral part of a consumer’s lifestyle. Offering convenience and different shopping options, eCommerce continues to flourish and is growing at a much faster rate than traditional retail channels, especially in emerging markets.

As the national regulator for eCommere activity in Malta, the MCA seeks to ensure compliance with the Electronic Commerce Act,  whilst also supporting the local business sector capitalise on web technologies to penetrate foreign or niche markets. In view of this, the Authority continuously monitors the local market to identify challenges and barriers that might be hindering the adoption of eCommerce whilst keeping tabs on global developments to ensure that local business does not miss out on opportunities to thrive.

In 2014, within the ambit of the Digital Malta Strategy, the MCA launched the National eCommerce Strategy with the aim of supporting the take-up of eCommerce and the provision of eCommerce-related services by local businesses, which remains low compared to the rest of the EU. In this context, the Authority undertakes a number of initiatives for improving sustainability of the eCommerce sector and engages with a number of key stakeholders with the aim of accelerating the development of this sector, which is a key priority for the MCA.