Database

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Trading restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 2010

Chapter Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-chapter Online sales
Law on Games of Chance (GSpG)
Gambling activities offered internationally are subject to the national gambling monopoly and may not be advertised or executed within Austria.
Coverage Online gambling
Trading restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since August 2013

Chapter Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-chapter Barriers to fulfillment
De minimis rule
The European de minimis threshold for import duties is harmonized. Goods with a value of up to 131 SDR / 150 EUR / 198 USD are exempted from customs duties. The VAT de minimis threshold is not harmonized within the EU and can vary between 10 and 22 EUR, i.e. Member States can decide on a value within this range to grant an exemption on VAT for imported goods.

According to Austria's de minimis rule, goods with a value of up to 19 SDR / 22 EUR / 29 USD are exempted from VAT.
Coverage Horizontal
Restrictions on data

AUSTRIA

Since 2010

Chapter Content access  |  Sub-chapter Bandwitch, net neutrality
Net neutrality issues
According to a survey conducted by the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) among its members in early 2010 and found evidence of blocking or charging extra for the provision of VoIP services in mobile networks by certain mobile operators in Austria.
Coverage VoIP services
Restrictions on data

AUSTRIA

Since 2015

Chapter Content access  |  Sub-chapter Censorship and filtering of web content
European Court of Justice rulingn- Case C-314/12 "UPC Telekabel Wien GmbH v Constantin Film Verleih GmbH and Wega
Filmproduktionsgesellschaft mbH"

Case UPC Telekabel Wien GmbH v Constantin Film Verleih GmbH and Wega ilmproducktionsgesellschaft mbH
The European Court of Justice has interpreted in 2014 that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) may be ordered by national courts to block customer access to a copyright-infringing websites. This ruling aims to limit online piracy.

In June 2014, the Austrian Supreme Court ruled that UPC Telekabel Wien GmbH (an Austrian ISP) must block access to copyright infringing websites.
Coverage Internet service providers
Restrictions on data

AUSTRIA

Since 2000

Chapter Data policies  |  Sub-chapter Other
Austrian Data Protection Act
Contrary to the standard definition of personal data, the definition of personal data under the Austrian Data Protection Authority extends to data relating to both individuals and legal entities. Austria is one of the few countries to extend local data protection law to legal entities.
Coverage Horizontal
Restrictions on data

AUSTRIA

Since 1995
Since 2000

Chapter Data policies  |  Sub-chapter Personal rights to data privacy
Directive 95/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 1995 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data

Austrian Data Protection Act
For all EU countries, consent for collection of data is required. However, each country has specific rules on whether wiritten consent is required or not. The directive 95/46/EC sets obligations for "controllers" with one or more establishments within the European Economic Area (EEA) and also to controllers who are outside the EEA, but use equipment located within the EEA to process personal data.

In the case of Austria, there are strict requirements for a data subject’s consent to be valid:
- the data subject must be provided with all relevant information about the data to be processed, the purpose of the respective data processing and any potential data recipients;
- the consent must be given without any restraints (hence, the Austrian courts are frequently reluctant to accept the validity of employee consent); and
- the data subject has to receive explicit information about his right to revoke his consent at anytime, without giving reason for such revocation.

Member States may determine the circumstances in which personal data may be used or disclosed to a third party in the context of the legitimate ordinary business activities of companies and other bodies. Member States may similarly specify the conditions under which personal data may be disclosed to a third party for the purposes of marketing subject to the provisions allowing a data subject to object to the processing of data regarding him, at no cost and without having to state his reasons.

In the case of Austria, the individual can object to the processing of his personal data for the purpose of marketing.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1975, last amended in 2014

Chapter Bussiness mobility  |  Sub-chapter Other restrictive practices related to business mobility
Federal Act of 20 March 1975, FLG no 218, governing the employment of foreign nationals / Art. 49 Settlement and Residence Act, para 2 and 4.
For contract service suppliers (CSS) a work permit is needed. For independent service suppliers (ISS) only a residency permit is needed.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1975, last amended in 2014

Chapter Bussiness mobility  |  Sub-chapter Other restrictive practices related to business mobility
Federal Act of 20 March 1975, FLG no 218, governing the employment of foreign nationals / Art. 49 Settlement and Residence Act, para 2 and 4.
Although no quotas are applied, Austria nonetheless has a regulation that states that when the share of employed foreigners passes 8% in total, stricter labour market regulations and test procedures could be introduced.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1975, last amended in 2014

Chapter Bussiness mobility  |  Sub-chapter Quotas, Labour Market Tests, Limits of Stay
Federal Act of 20 March 1975, FLG no 218, governing the employment of foreign nationals
For intra-corporate transferees (ICT), contractual service suppliers (CSS) as well as independent service suppliers (ISS), there are labour market tests. Work permit can be assigned if the position in question cannot be assigned to domestic employees. A residency permit can be supplied if the activity is in the economic and labour market interest of Austria.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1975, last amended in 2014

Chapter Bussiness mobility  |  Sub-chapter Quotas, Labour Market Tests, Limits of Stay
Federal Act of 20 March 1975, FLG no 218, governing the employment of foreign nationals / Art. 49 Settlement and Residence Act, para 2 and 4
There are no specific quotas at the European level, but member states retain the right to set the volumes of admission of intra-corporate transferees who apply to be admitted to their territory.

The Ministry of Employment in Austria states that there is a labour market quota for contractual service suppliers (CSS) and independent service suppliers (ISS), it but does not state the precise amount.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Reported in 2016

Chapter Competition policy  |  Sub-chapter Competition
State-owned entreprise
The Austrian Government owns 28.42% of Telekom Austria AG, the incumbent telecom provider.
Coverage Telecommunication sector
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1975

Chapter Intellectual Property Rights  |  Sub-chapter Copyright
Code of Criminal Procedure
In the Austrian Copyright Act , there are no specific provisions against internet piracy. Additionally, it is reported that, as copyright infringement is a private criminal offense and only prosecuted upon request by the right holder concerned, neither public prosecutors nor the police have a relevant role to play for criminal enforcement of copyright law.
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 1998

Chapter Intellectual Property Rights  |  Sub-chapter Copyright
Directive 2001/29/EC (The Copyright Directive)

Federal Law on Copyright in Works of Literature and Art and on Related Rights (Copyright Act) (as last amended in 1998)
In the European Union, there is no general principle for the use of copyright protected material comparable to the fair use/fair dealing principle in the US. Directive 2001/29/EC defines an optional, but exhaustive set of limitations from the author´s exclusive rights under the control of the “three-step test”. This is a clause in the Berne Convention that establishes three cumulative conditions to the limitations and exceptions of a copyright holder’s rights. The Directive has been transposed by Member States with significant freedom.

The Directive uses the term “copyright”, whereas in Austria (as in Germany) the author's rights are covered by the “Urheberrecht”. German-language law systems distinguish between “Urheberrecht” (author’s right), which cannot be removed or sold and is therefore inalienably linked to the author and derivative rights of exploitation (“Verwertungsrechte”).
Coverage Horizontal
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 2011

Chapter Investment  |  Sub-chapter Screening of investment and acquisitions
Aus­trian For­eign Trade Act
The acquisition of an interest above 25% or a controlling interest in an Austrian enterprise engaged in specific protected industry sectors (including the telecommunication sector) requires advance approval by the Austrian Minister of Economic Affairs.
Coverage Certain sectors including telecommunication sector
Establishment restrictions

AUSTRIA

Since 2011

Chapter Investment  |  Sub-chapter Screening of investment and acquisitions
Aus­trian For­eign Trade Act
Foreign investment through the form of acquisitions in specific protected industry sectors (including the telecommunication sector) requires approval in advance by the Austrian Minister of Economic Affairs. However, so far there are no reports of foreign investments having been blocked on national security grounds.
Coverage Certain sectors including telecommunication sector