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The EHHA welcomes European Commission’s Proposal for Regulation of data Collection

Last week, the European Commission published a proposal for regulation of data collection and sharing relating to short-term rental (STR) services.

The European Holiday Home Association (EHHA), the united voice for short-term rental accommodation in Europe, welcomes this first major effort which emphasises the need for proportionate registration at local, regional or national level as a prerequisite for scalable platform data-sharing at EU level. Too often local rules are fragmented, complex and place excessive burden on STR accommodation providers. We hope that this proposal can clarify the role of all stakeholders, including local authorities, in ensuring fairer and responsible STR services across the region.

Short-term accommodation rentals (STRs) are an increasingly important part of the tourism sector. They represent nearly one quarter of the total EU supply of tourist accommodation1, are very popular among travellers and create opportunities for businesses, in particular SMEs, and citizens who use earnings from hosting to cover increasing cost of living. However, STRs are hindered by a variety of regulatory and often burdensome and outdated patchwork of requirements imposed on STR accommodation providers. These often create barriers to access the EU’s Single Market. The EHHA is convinced that a hyper-fragmented regulatory landscape and low awareness of the STR ecosystem3 exacerbates legal uncertainty and poses challenges for effective enforcement.

The Non-Executive Chair of the EHHA, Mr Eduardo Miranda, said:

“Short-term rentals are an essential part of the fast-growing EU tourism economy which creates jobs and opportunities for EU citizens as well as micro, small and medium sized enterprises.

The EHHA members has throughout the years supported STR data sharing with authorities4, in order to facilitate evidence-based policymaking. We believe that a harmonised framework for data collection and reporting, based on fair and proportionate underlying local rules, will help address the current challenges the STRs are facing such as a fragmented regulatory landscape, lack of legal certainty and ineffective enforcement.

We fully support the Commission’s efforts to create a framework for data collection and sharing which, in turn, would allow policy makers to design informed and proportionate local STR rules – rules which comply with the Services Directive.”

Key points on the proposed regulation:

  • This would deliver EU wide data collection, collated at national level, with national level rules
  • Registration schemes would be required by each member state on a national level, on a self-declaration basis
  • Registration numbers will be provided automatically, with any verification / certification to be requested after the process is completed
  • The register would collate activity data (number of nights let), owner contact data, whether properties are shared / entire
  • Member states would be able to add further requirements
  • Any requirements must be proportionate, non-discriminatory and comply with EU law
  • National level regulation implementation would be supervised by the European Commission
  • Further detail will emerge via consultation with member states, which will take approximately 12 months. Once agreed, it may take two years to reach implementation, however this has been prioritised.

Read the full release: EHHA Press release on EU STR Initiative

nb: Art.3, point (i) of 2022/2065: “‘online platform’ means a hosting service that, at the request of a recipient of the service, stores and disseminates information to the public, unless that activity is a minor and purely ancillary feature of another service or a minor functionality of the principal service and, for objective and technical reasons, cannot be used without that other service, and the integration of the feature or functionality into the other service is not a means to circumvent the applicability of this Regulation.”

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