20. 2. 2012 8:37

The Czech Republic among initiators of a Plan for Growth in Europe

As the March European Council draws near, the Czech Republic has called for rapid progress in completing the Union’s internal market and thus strengthening economic growth in a joint letter with eleven other Member States (Estonia, Finland, the Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom) addressed to Herman Van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso.

The letter requires EU institutions to speed up preparation and implementation of measures necessary for a successful development of the internal market and identifies 8 priority areas to which particular attention should be paid. Emphasis is, particularly, put on services, digital single market, internal market in energy, the establishment of the European Research Area and the reduction of EU regulatory burden. Other initiatives aim at opening the EU to global markets, promoting free trade with key economic partners, improving the flexibility and functioning of a European labour market, and, finally, reforming financial services sector in order to be competitive and responsible for bearing the costs of the risks banks take.

The above mentioned letter is a welcome complement to the fiscal treaty in the debate on how to solve the current euro area crisis. It is precisely the internal market which, according to the Czech Republic and the other signatory states, represents a key instrument to attaining competitiveness, prosperity and economic growth in the EU. Furthermore, the internal market forms the very basis of European integration without which no other measures intended for stabilisation of the euro area can bring positive results in the long run. Therefore the proposals contained in the letter should be reflected in the upcoming European Council’s Conclusions in March.

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