European Commission adopted Single Market Act

On Wednesday 13 April, the European Commission adopted Single Market Act identifying 12 priority projects to relaunch the European single market, from social cohesion to intellectual protection via funding for SMEs.

Each instrument is accompanied by a flagship initiative on which the Commission undertakes to make proposals during the coming months, the aim being to gain final approval from the European Parliament and the Council before the end of 2012. Each action also contains other, equally important proposals which should benefit from the momentum generated by the flagship initiative in order to make progress – sometimes in parallel and sometimes at a slightly slower rate.

 “We want Europe to be a respected power. This market of 500 million consumers and citizens is the basis of our economy. We want Europe to be not just only a place of consumption, it must keep a productive base. We want to work on new, greener, more sustainable and more innovative growth”, said Michel Barnier, the commissioner for the single market.

Our priority is growth and jobs”, said José Manuel Barroso, the president of the European Commission.

Moreover these proposals are also doing all we can to help companies, especially to facilitate the access of 21 million SMEs to finance to help them to grow. Amongst other things the Commission will propose to give a passport to venture capital funds so they can invest in SMEs in other member states. The aim is also to simplify the business environment with an overhaul of the public procurement rules and by lifting the accounting burden from 7 million small and micro enterprises, with potential savings of 7.4 billion euro.

Besides in order to make life easier for businesses they will reduce the regulatory and administrative constraints, particularly those on SMEs. Simplifying accounting standards for businesses represents potential annual savings of €1.5 billion for 1.1 million SMEs, and €5.2 billion for 5.9 million “very small businesses”.

Other priorities concern: citizens’ mobility, intellectual property rights, the increase of consumers’ confidence, the improvement of services, more modern and efficient transport and telecoms’ networks, taxation, social cohesion and the simplification of public procurements’ procedures.

Link to Single Market Act http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/smact/docs/20110413-communication_en.pdf#page=2

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