EU presents business reform recommendations with implications for Spain

Reform recommendations Eurozone Economy Booms As Virus Restrictions Are Lifted

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The EU has presented its updated reform recommendations on regulation of seven professional business services with implications for Spain.

The aim of the recommendations is to incentivise and assist Member States in creating a regulatory environment that is conducive to growth, innovation and job creation and above all to do away with persisting obstacles in the single market for services.

“The updated recommendations reflect the very limited progress made by Member States in reforming professional regulations since the initial recommendations were first published in 2017. Only a few Member States have taken action to remove disproportionate regulation. Overall, the reforms only partially addressed the Commission’s recommendations, leaving significant room for further regulatory improvements in most Member States,” the EU said in a statement on July 9.

Targeted and effective structural reforms in these sectors would benefit European industrial ecosystems hit hard by the pandemic by creating a more open business environment and improving choice, prices and availability of services for consumers and industry.

“Business services are essential for the European economy. European consumers as well as all industrial ecosystems depend on them,” said Commissioner Thierry Breton, responsible for the Internal Market.

“Today’s recommendations provide a new impetus for Member States to improve the competitiveness and resilience of our Single Market for services and contribute to the post COVID-19 recovery. The limited progress on reforms in the past 4 years shows that we need to move up one gear. The European Commission is ready to support Member States in this process,” he added.

The recommendations focus on seven professional business services with high growth, innovation and jobs potential: architects, engineers, lawyers, accountants, patent agents, real estate agents and tourist guides.

The recommendations address national rules that regulate access to and exercise of these services, for instance by reserving broad areas of activities to professionals with specific qualifications or limiting the types of company forms and ownership structures allowed.

Business services, many of which are regulated professional services, represent around 14 per cent of EU employment.

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Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.