Commission adopts Single Market guidance

The free movement of goods is an essential corner stone of the Single Market that benefits European citizens and businesses. Ensuring and facilitating its smooth functioning is of paramount importance particularly in the current pandemic and for Europe’s economic recovery. 

In this context, the Commission adopted three guidance documents that aim to help European citizens, businesses, but also national administrations to fully harness the Single Market for goods. Facilitating the free movement of goods and preventing national barriers is even more important in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, in which certain Member States introduced restrictive measures that disrupted the functioning of the Single Market. 

Commissioner Thierry Breton, responsible for the Internal Market, said: “Our internal market is the true driver of European recovery and prosperity, and the coronavirus pandemic taught us to cherish its value and not to underestimate its vulnerabilities. 

The guidance documents published today will help ensure a more uniform implementation of rules on the free movement of goods and improve how the Single Market functions.” 

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Malta Pushes For Rule Of Law Mechanism And Stricter Climate Laws In EP

Malta is pushing for stronger rule of law mechanisms and stricter climate laws in the European Parliament plenary. A draft resolution envisions an objective and evidence-based tool that would apply equally, objectively and fairly to all member states, to protect and strengthen democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights. A new “Annual Monitoring Cycle”, comprising preventive and corrective measures ranging from country-specific recommendations (which could be modelled after the European Semester) to budgetary conditionality, would integrate and complement existing mechanisms, such as those provided in Article 7 TEU and the Commission’s Annual Rule of Law Report.

The resolution will ensure the mechanism has teeth EPP MEP Roberta Metsola said. It will be a permanent binding mechanism that outlines that the EU is not a cash cow, she added. “EU values should be our starting point-  they need to prove that they abide by EU laws,” she said, adding Member states cannot simply accede to the Union and then stop abiding by its values.

S&D MEP Miriam Dalli said the mechanism would ensure that there is always a common yardstick so that countries would not lament that they are being unfairly targeted.

Dalli pushing for climate target for 2040

MEPs will also debate the Commission proposal on a European climate law. It aims to transform political promises that the EU will become climate neutral by 2050 into a binding obligation, to give European citizens and businesses the legal certainty and predictability they need to plan for the transformation.

In their draft report, MEPs call for emissions to be reduced by 60% in 2030 compared to 1990. They insist that both the EU and all member states individually must become climate-neutral by 2050. As the Vice President of S&D, MEP Miriam Dalli said she was pushing for there to be a target in 2040.  Industries prefer to have a consistent idea of the targets it needs to reach, she said.

She has also said she is pushing for a European Climate Change Council. She also said that she would be pushing for a greater representation of women on boards. Where there is legislative action, there is change, Dalli said.

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