Internal Market Strategy focus on compliance and enforcement is right

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The FINANCIAL — EUROCHAMBRES supports the focus on more robust compliance and enforcement of existing internal market rules in the Single Market strategy published on October 28 by the European Commission.

This emphasis on doing better, not more, corresponds with feedback from the Chamber network on barriers to trading across the EU. The main regret is the absence from the new strategy of initiatives to upgrade the substandard Points of Single Contact for service providers, according to EUROCHAMBRES. 

Do better, not more

“The Commission is rightly positioning itself as the champion of internal market implementation instead of the champion of new legislation. This is the key to opening up the single market for businesses, as trading within the EU remains hugely complex and bureaucratic because of the way that member states interpret their obiligations,” said Arnaldo Abruzzini, Secretary-General of EUROCHAMBRES.

Over to you, member states

EUROCHAMBRES is pleased with the measures announced to try to restrict the proliferation of extra national rules as much as possible, notably the proposal to improve the notification procedure under the Services Directive and the revision of the mutual recognition regulation. Ultimately though, improvements are down to the attitude and effectiveness of the member states. “We expect a strong commitment from the member states and local/regional authorities, who have to play their role to make cross-border trade easier for companies and consumers”, added Mr Abruzzini.

EUROCHAMBRES also welcomes the actions aimed at streamlining compliance obligations and information requirements for businesses such as the VAT action plan, the services passport, a legislative initiative on insolvency and the promotion of digital tools.

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Substandard Points of Single Contact must be upgraded

EUROCHAMBRES regrets that no reference is made in the strategy to the Points of Single Contact (PSCs). This potentially highly valuable tool for cross-border service providers is undermined by flaws in the way they have been developed and are run across the EU28.

“Nearly 23 years on from the Single European Act, 84% of polled entrepreneurs recently told us that the single market doesn’t help them and highlighted information and procedural barriers.

That’s why it’s crucial that tools like the PSCs perform more effectively”, concluded Mr Abruzzini.


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