Single Market Act – 50 proposals for improving our work, business and exchanges with one another
On 27 October 2010, the European Commission unveiled its Single Market Act, listing 50 proposals that could add further dynamism, efficiency and transparency to the single market during the next two years. (2011-2012).
The re-launch of the single market is an essential element of the EU 2020 strategy, which proposes seven flagship initiatives: 1. an innovation Union, 2. youth on the move, 3. a digital agenda for Europe, 4. a resource-efficient Europe, 5. an industrial policy for the globalisation era, 6. an agenda for new skills and jobs and, 7. a European platform to tackle poverty.
Pre-selected proposals of CEOC International key interest:
Proposal No 1: The European Parliament and the Council should take the necessary steps to adopt the proposals for the EU patent, its languages and the unified patent litigation system. The aim is for the first EU patents to be issued in 2014.
Proposal No 4: The Commission and the Member States will cooperate in continuing to develop the internal market in services on the basis of the “mutual evaluation” process set out in the Service Directive and currently implemented by the Member States and the Commission. In 2011, the Commission will indicate specific measures to this end, including in the business services sector.
Proposal No 6: The Commission will propose a legislative reform of the standardisation framework in 2011 to make standard-setting procedures more effective, efficient and inclusive and to extend the scope of the procedures from goods to services.
Proposal No 11: The Commission will present, in early 2011, an energy efficiency plan to exploit the potential for significant energy savings by complementing existing policies in all sectors where energy is consumed.
Proposal No 39: In 2011 the Commission will draw up a multiannual action plan for the development of European market surveillance. In addition, in relation to the customs services and the market surveillance authorities of the Member States, the Commission will draw up guidelines for customs controls in the area of product safety in 2011. The Commission will also propose a revision of the General Product Safety Directive (GPSD) in order to ensure a coherent and effective framework for the safety of consumer goods in the EU.
Proposal No 44: The Commission and the Member States will cooperate in continuing to develop the internal market by stepping up the procedure for evaluating the acquis, in particular using the “mutual evaluation” process set out in the Service Directive and currently being implemented by the Member States and the Commission. The experience gleaned from the mutual evaluation process of the Services Directive will also be applied to other key single market legislation.
From the debate in the European Parliament IMCO (Internal Market and Consumer Protection committee) on 09 December 2010, attended by CEOC representatives:
The three rapporteurs on the issue MEP Sandra KALNIETE (Group of the European People's Party-Christian Democrats, Latvia), António Fernando CORREIA DE CAMPOS (Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, Portugal) and Cristian Silviu BUŞOI (Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, Romania) discussed the Commission proposal, together with their IMCO colleagues and representatives from the European Commission and the Council.
Ms Kalniete underlined the need to focus on 10-12 priorities out of the 50 proposals made and to give incentives for the transposition of EU Directives.
Her colleague Correia de Campos agreed on this and called also for the set up of a concrete time table and for more tangibility of actions/results.
Mr Creutzmann on behalf of Mr Busoi underlined the need for a more business-friendly single market, especially considering the development of business services (eliminate differences in e-commerce etc.).
Heide Rühle, shadow for the Kalniete report, asked for more transparency, also with view to EU consultations.
Jürgen Creutzmann, shadow for the Busoi report, repeated that the EU should set and focus on priorities for a European Market Surveillance System and a harmonized product control system in the EU. In his view, the EU Agency Frontex, dealing with border (security) issues, could be an example for an agency in the field of market surveillance.
Malcolm Harbour, shadow on the Correia de Campos report, defended the division of the Single Market Act in three reports and said that, nevertheless, a prioritization on some key proposals would be essential to generate tangible output.
Emilie Turunen (Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance, DK), shadowing the SMA on behalf of the Greens, underlined the importance of innovation as mentioned by MEP Creutzmann and promised that the Danish Presidency has made the SMA one of its priorities in 2012.
Bernadette Vergnaud, IMCO Vice-Chair (Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, France), mentioned the fight against counterfeiting as one of the essential challenges for the next years, especially with view to Internet sales.
SMEs and SMA (Proposal No 12, 13, 14)
Malcolm Harbour (chair), Jurgen Creutzmann (Member)
Both stress the importance of the SMEs in their involvement with the SMA.
In particular, they pointed out public procurement, R&D.
Service sector and SMA (Proposal No 4, 5, 18, 22)
Jürgen Creutzmann (Member)
JC highlighted importance of the service sector for the recovery of business. In this respect, he supports the initiation of e-commerce together with e-governance and e-authentication.
The other issues mentioned:
- Proposal No 33 – recognition of qualification
- Proposal No 39 – solidarity with the market surveillance, different level of development among the EU countries.
Transport, Energy, Social Market (Proposal No 26, 27, 29, 30)
Emilie Turunen (member)
She assured the audience that the Danish presidency will put a high priority to the SMA.
EU patents, Services of general interest (Proposal No 1, 25)
Bernadette Vergnaud (Vice-Chair)
She believes that EU patent is crucial for the SMA. Moreover she found the lack of communication of services of general economic interest.
In the week from 13-17 December: Shadow rapporteur meeting
28 February 2011 – Vote in IMCO on draft report
23 March 2011 – vote in EP plenary
End of March 2011 – Council to adopt the Single Market Act