Roadmap for market surveillance: where are we?

Friday, 20 March 2020 10:23 Market Surveillance
Rate this item
(0 votes)

The European Commission has recently renewed its strategy for the enforcement of single market rules. The plan published on 10 March 2020 aims to break down the barriers to a well-functioning single market.

At a first glance it appears to be a wide-ranging and long-term plan with a significant package of initiatives. 

The plan seems very ambitious and one wonders whether it will be applied in full or in part, also considering the recent outbreak that is threatening the free movement of goods and people.

The European Commission has recently renewed its strategy for the enforcement of single market rules. The plan published on 10 March 2020 aims to break down the barriers to a well-functioning single market.

At a first glance it appears to be a wide-ranging and long-term plan with a significant package of initiatives. 
22 actions have been grouped into 6 chapters.

  1. INCREASING KNOWLEDGE AND AWARENESS OF SINGLE MARKET RULES

  2. IMPROVING THE TRANSPOSITION, IMPLEMENTATION AND APPLICATION OF EU RULES

  3. MAKING THE BEST USE OF PREVENTIVE MECHANISMS

  4. DETECTING NON-COMPLIANCE INSIDE TH E SINGLE MARKET AND AT THE EXTERNAL BORDERS

  5. STRENGTHENING ENFORCEMENT ON THE GROUND

  6. IMPROVING HANDLING OF INFRINGEMENT CASES

Particular emphasis is placed on the set up of a joint Single Market Enforcement Task-Force (SMET) that someone has defined “as a watchdog to police the enforcement and national compliance with EU law”.

The SMET will be composed of Member States and Commission and will complement a cooperation network to be set up between national enforcement coordinators, making use of the existing Internal Market Advisory Committee (IMAC) framework.

The plan will develop in line with the revision of several directives, acts and plans such as the General Product Safety Directive, the single market Transparency Directive, the Single Digital Gateway Regulation,  the European Judicial Training Strategy and the adoption of new legislative proposals such as the new Services Notifications Directive.

Chapter I “increasing knowledge and awareness of single market rules” foresees a revision of existing guidelines and handbooks, as for instance the Guide to the application of Treaty provisions governing the free movement of goods.

Additionally, several new Guidance have been scheduled. Main arguments are:

Chapter II “improving the transposition, implementation and application of EU rules” describes a strategy that will influence the process of transposition of the market directives. The process will be monitored through “dynamic virtual concordance tables” that will enable a continuous update on the state of transposition also after the entry into force of the original transposition laws.

Chapter III “making the best use of preventive mechanisms” refers to the recently updated Proportionality Test Directive and the future implementation of the single market Transparency Directive as tools to prevent national measures contrary to EU law in the Member States. As for eliminating the barriers in the 

services single market, new legislative proposals such as the new Services Notifications Directive and a specific chapter in the preparatory work on the Digital Services Act has been foreseen.

The actions in chapter IV “detecting noncompliance inside the single market and at the external borders” envisage the creation of a single European Information entry point for authorities to control non-food products bringing together existing systems such as ICMS and RAPEX. Moreover, the Internal Market Information system (IMI) will become the default tool for the administrative cooperation within the single market. The enforcement in the agri-food chain will strengthened and new labelling and traceability systems will be developed.

 

Chapter V “strengthening enforcement on the ground” refers to a new EU Product Compliance Network composed by single liaison offices established in the Member States to represent their market surveillance authorities. SOLVIT,  the online service that helps when EU rights as a citizen or as a business are breached by public authorities in another EU country, will be reinforced to become the default alternative dispute resolution tool in all single market policy areas.

Finally, the actions of chapter VI “Improving handling of infringement cases” aim to give the highest priority to the cases having a significant impact on the single market; a single market Enforcement Strategic Report, identifying specific areas of concern and priorities for enforcement will be published annually.

The EU pilot system, i.e. a tool for obtaining information in the phase of dialogue with the Member States at the pre-infringement stage, will be revised identifying clear and objective criteria for its use.

Conclusion

The plan seems very ambitious and one wonders whether it will be applied in full or in part, also considering the recent outbreak that is threatening the free movement of goods and people.

37 Friday, 20 March 2020 10:29

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.