CIC Gives warm welcome to EU Services Directive
Posted: 15th November 2006
The European Parliament has approved the Services Directive, which is aimed at creating a free market for Europe’s services sector, at its second reading today (15 November).
Whilst welcoming the aims of the Directive, CIC had serious concerns regarding the application of the proposals to the construction industry, in particular the application of the country of origin principle.
Under the country of origin principle, service providers – for example construction consultants – would have been subject only to the law of their home country, not the host country, when working in another member state (without being established there). This meant that, for example, a Spanish consultant working on a project in England, would be subject to the law of Spain not England.
The CIC having actively and successfully campaigned for the removal of the ‘country of origin’ principle feel that this is excellent news, not just for the UK but also for Europe as a whole.
The government has said the Directive will generate up to 136,000 new jobs and be worth up to £5bn per year to UK businesses and consumers, who will benefit from the Directive, especially SMEs who can take advantage of testing the waters in a Member State on a temporary basis – this is only one of the examples the Directive has achieved. Not only businesses but consumers will benefit from greater variety and choice of services, and lower prices.
Trade Minister Ian McCartney called the ruling ‘good news’ for UK businesses, saying: “We will now have a Europe where businesses and entrepreneurs can tap into new markets without facing a mountain of unnecessary rules and regulations”
The government claims that the directive, which is expected to be implemented across the EU by 2010, will be particularly beneficial for the UK, with its strong services sector
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