The Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies has prepared a draft bill to provide legal legitimacy to online businesses which have been out of the provision of laws and regulation till now.

After the enactment of the bill, online businesses will have to be listed in the government body and the website of the company will be mandatory for conducting online businesses.

It is stated in the draft of the proposed bill that if goods are broken or not the same as shown on the electronic platform, the product should be exchanged or the customer should get a refund.

“Online businesses that have come into operation prior to the enactment of the bill must be listed within a year and new businesses shall be listed before commencement as specified by the new Business Act,” reads the draft bill to regulate e-commerce.

The bill stipulates that the website and business should be done through secure electronic system and consumer selection services should also be made available to consumers on the electronic platforms.

The proposed draft also stipulates that online trading without government registration will be considered a criminal offense and the case will be heard in the district court.

“The act will also attract individuals, firms or organizations residing outside Nepal who provide goods and services in Nepal through e-commerce and provide such goods or services,” the draft bill said.

Electronic trading companies will also be allowed to operate branches, warehousing and outlets. The draft also stipulates that if an employee of an e-commerce company commits a business offense, the business operator will also face consequences.