Press release

Statement on delivery charges summit

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Jo Swinson hosted a summit today (26 November 2013) on delivery charges with e-retailers, consumer groups, couriers and enforcement groups.

Consumer Minister Jo Swinson hosted a summit today (26 November 2013) on delivery charges with e-retailers, consumer groups, couriers and enforcement groups.

Following the meeting she said:

With online shopping revenues expected to break through the £10 billion barrier for the first time this year, it is vital that customers are getting a fair deal when buying goods online. Retailers and couriers should make it absolutely clear at an early stage to all consumers, regardless of where they live, what they can expect to pay to have their items delivered.

After today’s summit, it’s a very positive step that the British Retail Consortium has agreed to work with Consumer Futures and other stakeholders to develop guidance for industry. This will help retailers and couriers provide clearer information about how much something will cost to be delivered and help explain to consumers what to expect from online retailers and couriers when making a purchase.

Tom Ironside British Retail Consortium Director of Business & Regulation, said:

UK retailers are world beaters in their innovative use of technology and their success in selling online. Driving this success has been retailers’ investment in user friendly websites, reliable deliveries and convenient ways of buying in-store, at home or on the move.

We have worked closely with a range of parties in Scotland to identify some best practice principles on parcel delivery that will be launched later in the week. We have agreed to apply these principles to the rest of the UK and to work with UK government and other stakeholders to that end.

Notes for editors

  1. The government’s economic policy objective is to achieve ‘strong, sustainable and balanced growth that is more evenly shared across the country and between industries’. It set 4 ambitions in the ‘Plan for Growth’, published at Budget 2011:
  • to create the most competitive tax system in the G20
  • to make the UK the best place in Europe to start, finance and grow a business
  • to encourage investment and exports as a route to a more balanced economy
  • to create a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe

Work is underway across government to achieve these ambitions, including progress on more than 250 measures as part of the Growth Review. Developing an Industrial Strategy gives new impetus to this work by providing businesses, investors and the public with more clarity about the long-term direction in which the government wants the economy to travel.