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    Sandra Kalniete (EPP, LV), Rapporteur on
    In its resolution of 20 May 2010, the European Parliament called on the Commission to produce a clear set of political priorities through the adoption of a "Single Market Act", which should cover both legislative and non-legislative initiatives, aimed at creating a highly competitive social market and green economy. On 27 October 2010, the European Commission adopted the Communication "Towards a Single Market Act. For a highly competitive social market economy", providing 50 concrete proposals.
     
    In response to the Commission communication, and following deliberations in ten parliamentary Committees under the leadership of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, on 6 April 2011 the European Parliament adopted three own-initiative reports corresponding to the 3 pillars of the Single Market Act:
     
    • Governance and Partnership in the Single Market. Rapporteur: Sandra Kalniete (EPP, LV) 
    • A Single Market for Europeans. Rapporteur: Antonio Fernando Correia De Campos (S&D, PT)
    • A Single Market for Enterprises and Growth. Rapporteur: Cristian Silviu Buşoi (ALDE, RO)
     
    On 13 April 2011, the European Commission adopted the final version of the Single Market Act which contains twelve projects on which to relaunch the Single Market for 2012, so that the twentieth anniversary of the Single Market can be celebrated with renewed dynamism.

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Services directive
    The Services Directive has been a key tool to promote structural reform in the services sector. However, it is still not fully implemented and correctly applied in all Member States as businesses continue to face an accumulation of red tape, discriminatory practices and barriers that hamper the free movement of services.
     
    IMCO has actively followed the implementation of the Services Directive and has led three own-initiative reports on the matter, notably:
     
    - The Internal Market for Services: State of Play and Next Steps (2012/2144(INI)), Anna Maria CORAZZA BILDT, EPP
    - Mutual Evaluation Process of the Services Directive (2011/2085(INI)), Malgorzata HANDZLIK, EPP
    - Implementation of the Services Directive 2006/123/EC (2010/2053(INI)), Evelyne GEBHARDT, S&D
     
    The latest resolution, adopted by plenary on 11 September 2013, argues that by unleashing remaining barriers and administrative burdens in the services sector, the EU could make an economic gain of up to 2,6% of GDP in the next 5 years. The resolution regrets the "significant numbers of identified cases where Member States are inappropriately invoking overriding reasons of public interests" for the sole purpose of "protecting and favouring their domestic markets". IMCO  will continue following the work of the Commission in this domain, including in particular the latest initiative launched on 2 October 2013 of Member States together with the Commission assessing barriers restricting access to and exercise of regulated professions (professions to which access is conditional upon the possession of specific qualifications or for which the use of a specific title is protected, e.g. pharmacists or architects, see below on the revised directive on professional qualifications).  
     
    Rapporteur: Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (EPP)
     
    The shadow rapporteurs are: Sylvana Rapti(S&D), Morten Løkkegaard (ALDE), Heide Rühle (Greens), Malcolm Harbour (ECR), Thomas Händel (GUE/NGL) and Matteo Salvini (EFD).
     

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    European single market for electronic communications and to achieve a connected continent
    Despite efforts over the last ten years to liberalise and integrate the telecommunications market, Europe is still fragmented into 28 separate national communications markets, each with a limited number of players. To overcome this problem, in September 2013 the Commission has put forward a package of proposals to reform the European telecoms market, including a proposal for a regulation. This current patchy scenario raises barriers and increases the costs for operators wanting to provide cross-border services thereby impeding their expansion. EU rules on, for example, authorisations, regulatory conditions, spectrum assignment and consumer protection are implemented in diverging ways. As a consequence, while no operator is present in more than half of the Member States at best, overall more than 200 operators serve a market of 510 million of customers. This stands in stark contrast with the US or China who have one single market of 330 and 1400 million customers respectively, served by four to five large operators, with one legislation, one licensing system, and one spectrum policy. The untapped potential of an EU single market in electronic communications is estimated at up to 0.9% GDP, or EUR 110 billion per year. The benefits from a single market for business communication services alone amount to almost EUR 90 billion per year. To benefit from this untapped potential the proposed regulation builds upon and advances the main directives of 2002 governing the provision of electronic communications, as amended in 2009, by introducing directly applicable legislative provisions which shall operate in conjunction with the provisions of the existing legislative package. On 23 January 2014, the IMCO Committee adopted the draft opinion of Mr Harbour on the proposed regulation on a European single market for electronic communications. The opinion diverts significantly from the Commission's original approach of fully harmonising consumer rights provisions through the regulation and instead introduces valuable new provisions through amending the Universal Services and Users' Rights Directive.
     
    Rapporteur: Malcolm Harbour (ECR)
     
    The shadow rapporteurs are: Regina Bastos (EPP), Bernadette Vergnaud (S&D), Jürgen Creutzmann (ALDE) and Christian Engström (Greens).

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    OPINION on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down measures concerning the European single market for electronic communications and to achieve a Connected Continent, and amending Directives 2002/20/EC, 2002/21/EC and 2002/22/EC and Regulations (EC) No 1211/2009 and (EU) No 531/2012
    Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection
    Malcolm Harbour

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    DRAFT REPORT on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Regulation (EC) No 515/97 of 13 March 1997 on mutual assistance between the administrative authorities of the Member States and cooperation between the latter and the Commission to ensure the correct application of the law on customs and agricultural matters
    Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection
    António Fernando Correia de Campos

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Package travel and assisted travel arrangements
    The development of online sales and the liberalisation in the airline sector have changed the way in which consumers organise their holidays. More and more people book their holidays online, though different online operators. The revision of the 1990 directive would remove legal obstacles to cross-border trade, reduce compliance costs for business, achieve a high level of consumer protection and introduce mandatory rules for the protection of travellers which member States/traders may not derogate from to the detriment of consumers.

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Monday 10 February (15.00 - 18.30) and Tuesday 11 February 2014 (09.00 - 12.30)  in ASP 5G3. Click here for the draft agenda and here for the order of business.
     
    Newsletter: Issue 48: January 2014 - Previous issues  
        If you wish to subscribe, send us an email with "Newsletter" as subject
     
    Latest studies: 

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    High common level of network and information security across the Union
    In January 2013 the European Commission tabled a proposal for a directive concerning measures to ensure a high common level of network and information security across the Union. This proposal was presented in connection with the joint Communication of the Commission and High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on a European Cybersecurity Strategy. The objective of the Strategy is to ensure a secure and trustworthy digital environment, while promoting and protecting fundamental rights and other EU core values. IMCO issued a report on the directive, while ITRE and IMCO committees have been associated under Rule 50 (exclusive competence) on certain provisions, which were voted in January 2014 in the committee, with the aim to reach the EP position in the first reading in April 2014. The negotiations with the Council will start most probably during the Italian Presidency.
     
    Rapporteur: Andreas Schwab (EPP)
     
    Shadow rapporteurs: Vicente Garcés Ramón (S&D), Toine Manders (ALDE), Christian Engström (Greens), Malcolm Harbour (ECR), Matteo Salvini (EFD)

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Simplifying the transfer of motor vehicles registered in another MS within the Single Market
    Simplifying the transfer of motor vehicles registered in another MS within the Single Market addresses the issue that notwithstanding the progressing integration of the single market, motor vehicle registration problems remain a frequent obstacle for citizens when exercising their rights under EU law in their daily lives. To address those problems, on 4 April 2012, the Commission presented a legislative proposal aimed to harmonise, streamline, and simplify the procedures for re-registration of motor vehicles registered in another Member State. On this basis, on 9 July 2013 IMCO adopted a report , which seeks to further simplify the vehicle registration formalities and conditions. Following a slow progress in the Council, IMCO decided to enter informal negotiations with a view of reaching agreement with the Council on 23 January 2014 . On 31 January 2014, a majority of Member States have requested however an impact assessment on the taxation aspects of this proposal before continuing work on it. Therefore, the Presidency has suspended its negotiations as it could not get an informal mandate to proceed.
     
    Rapporteur: Toine Manders (ALDE)
     
    Shadow Rapporteurs: Othmar KARAS (EPP), Catherine STIHLER (S&D), Heide RÜHLE (Greens/EFA), Malcolm HARBOUR (ECR), Thomas HÄNDEL (GUE/NGL) and Matteo SALVINI (EFD).

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Hans-Peter Mayer
    The overall objective of the Commission's revised proposal is to enhance the functioning of the Internal Market and achieve a high level of consumer protection through the approximation of rules on packages and other combinations of travel services. The proposal seeks to establish a level playing field between operators, remove legal obstacles to cross-border trade and reduce compliance costs for businesses. At the same time, it aims to clarify which combinations of travel services are protected under EU package travel rules and replace unclear and outdated provisions. It contains mandatory rules for the protection of travellers, which Member States or traders may not derogate from to the detriment of consumers.
     
    Rapporteur: Hans-Peter Mayer (EPP)
     
    Shadow rapporteurs: Sergio Cofferati (S&D), Jorgo Chatzimarkakis (ALDE), Heide Rühle (Greens), Emma McClarkin (ECR), - (GUE), Matteo Salvini (EFD)

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Electronic invoicing in public procurement
    The IMCO Committee is currently considering the Commission's proposal on electronic invoicing ('e-invoicing') in public procurement. This complements the package for the modernisation of the EU public procurement rules, adopted by IMCO and scheduled for a vote in plenary in January 2014. Public procurement is the process used by government institutions, public sector organisations and certain undertakings in the utilities sectors to buy supplies, services and public works. Such expenditure is a significant and influential component of the economy.
     
    The procurement package strengthens the rules for electronic procurement, making its use mandatory at the latest 54 months after the entry into force of the revised instruments. Moving towards more efficient paperless procedures is expected to yield great benefits. However, the package does not cover the 'post-award' stage of invoicing, because it is not procurement-specific. The present initiative seeks to fill this gap, as e-invoicing in particular is expected to generate tangible financial savings for government and suppliers, and to promote digital business transactions throughout the EU. At the same time, great care needs to be taken to ensure there are no interoperability barriers to cross-border trade.
     
    The European Commission presented its proposal and the Impact Assessment to the IMCO Members on 30 September 2013. The first exchange of views has taken place on 4 November 2013. The consideration of amendments is expected in December 2013.
     
    Rapporteur: Birgit Collin-Langen (EPP)
     
    Shadow rapporteurs: Marc Tarabella (S&D), Jürgen Creutzmann (ALDE), Heide Rühle (Greens), Malcolm Harbour (ECR), - (GUE), Matteo Salvini (EFD)
     

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Inadequate consumer protection, especially in the U.S. mortgage market, not only led to considerable consumer detriment but was a major contributor to the global financial crisis. In the EU, mis-selling of financial products has also resulted in significant consumer harm. Considering the significant potential detriment that financial services can cause to individual consumers and to the Single Market, consumer protection policy needs to properly focus on this area. Improved transparency and better informed transactions resulting from such policy will lead to better solutions for consumers and greater market efficiency. A number of recommendations to strengthen consumer protection in the area of financial services are put forward in this study.

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Plenary votes
    At their plenary seating in Strasbourg, Members voted on the non-legislatives reports on Unfair Commercial Practices (Rochefort – ALDE/FR) and integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Arias Echeverría – EPP/ES) and on the harmonisation package (8 reports – Roithova – EPP/CS).

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Parliament is to hold a public hearing next Monday on the universal right to clean water, the first EP hearing under the European Citizens' Initiative allowing the public to ask the EU authorities for new legislation.
    Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
    Committee on Petitions
    Committee on Development
    Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Length of video : 133'
    You may manually download this video in WMV (1.4Gb) format

    Disclaimer : The interpretation of debates serves to facilitate communication and does not constitute an authentic record of proceedings. Only the original speech or the revised written translation is authentic.
    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    "eCall" devices that automatically alert rescue services to car crashes should be fitted to all new car models by October 2015, said the Internal Market Committee amending a draft law to this end on Tuesday. This system, using the 112 emergency call number, would enable the emergency services to reach the crash scene faster, saving lives and reducing injuries, MEPs note.
    Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Length of video : 152'
    You may manually download this video in WMV (1.6Gb) format

    Disclaimer : The interpretation of debates serves to facilitate communication and does not constitute an authentic record of proceedings. Only the original speech or the revised written translation is authentic.
    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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    Travellers should be guaranteed help getting home if their travel agency goes bust while they are on holiday in another country and travellers in difficulty should be able to get assistance, under new rules approved by internal market MEPs on Tuesday. MEPs also stress that organisers should not be able to change flight times or prices significantly after a sale is concluded.
    Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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     Wim van de Camp (EPP, NL), © EU
    The IMCO Committee worked on a legislative report on the approval and market surveillance of two-or-three wheel vehicles (mopeds and motorcycles) and quadricycles (on-road quads and mini-cars). Society, industry and consumers will benefit as the objectives of the proposed Regulation are:  
     
    Simplification. A less complex regulatory approach will ensures greater efficiency and less burdensome adaptation to technical progress. It also eliminates duplication of international standards, so that stakeholders are not confronted with different requirements addressing the same concern.
     
    Lower more proportionate emissions. The aim is to reduce the level of emissions of these so-called L-category vehicles, also in comparison to total road transport emissions which are decreasing overall.
     
    Increase vehicle safety. To meet the EU´s medium- to long-term road safety targets, the same high reductions in road accident fatalities and casualties as for other means of road transport are to be achieved.
     
    Rapporteur: Wim van de Camp (EPP)
     
    Shadow Rapporteurs: Kerstin Westphal (S&D), Toine Manders (ALDE), Heide Rühle (GREENS/EFA), Malcolm Harbour (ECR), Matteo Salvini (EFD)

    Source : © European Union, 2014 - EP

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