In light of a variety of new ways emerging to buy vehicles nowadays — not just through a dealership or private-party transaction — the Federal Trade Commission announced on Monday that it will host a one-day workshop.
FTC officials explained the event set for Jan. 19 is being designed to explore competition and related issues in the U.S. auto distribution system, including how consumers and businesses may be affected by state regulations and emerging trends in the industry. The event will take place in Washington, D.C., at the FTC’s Constitution Center Auditorium, starting at 9 a.m.
“The auto industry is a critical sector of the U.S. economy and one that is undergoing substantial technology-driven change,” FTC officials said. “It is currently subject to regulation at both the state and federal level.”
The FTC pointed out that states, for example, regulate the relationship between manufacturers and dealers that sell vehicles to consumers, including dealer location, warranty reimbursement and direct-to-consumer sales.
The agency noted other state and federal regulations govern a variety of other aspects of auto operation and ownership, such as safety, insurance and licensing.
The January workshop will focus primarily on exploring the competition issues arising from state level regulation of auto distribution. It also will explore emerging trends in the auto industry, such as car-sharing, connected cars and autonomous vehicles, with a focus on how those trends will affect the current regulatory system that governs the auto industry.
The workshop will be webcast live on the FTC’s website. Officials mentioned that individuals who want to attend in person advance registration is not required, but is strongly encouraged.
The agency added registration information, an agenda, directions to the FTC’s Constitution Center building and a list of speakers will be available in the near future on the event’s website.