Single Market Act Update 2012

by Shane Fitzgerald

Though Europe’s financial and sovereign debt crisis rumbles on and continues to dominate the Brussels policy-making agenda, it is important to also reflect on those medium and longer term EU policies which will play an important role in shaping the European economies in the years ahead.

Prime among these is the Single Market Act, which we covered in some detail upon its launch in early 2011 and in an update in August. The Act comprises twelve levers designed to boost growth and strengthen confidence in the EU’s common market, which are being launched over the course of 2011 and 2012 by the European Commission with the support of the European Parliament and national governments.

The first initiatives launched related to an overhaul of the European patent regime and to the taxation of energy products.

In August we commented on an initiative to improve standardisation procedures for products, services and production processes across the EU.

Since then there has been a lot of progress with the Commission proposing new rules designed to modernise European public procurementmake it easier for professionals to find skilled jobs across Europestimulate funding for so-called ‘social business’, and improve access to credit and venture capital for small and medium enterprises.

This article was first published by the Institute of International and European Affairs. Access the original here.