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On 3 March 2021, the United Kingdom (UK) Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, announced in a written statement to the UK Parliament, and without consulting the European Union (EU) in advance, that the grace period on border controls on a series of food and live products shipped from Great Britain to Northern Ireland would be extended. This meant that products of animal origin, composite products, food and feed of non-animal origin and plants and plant products could continue being ...

With public financing of enterprises on the rise globally, and substantially increased as a result of the pandemic, subsidisation has become an issue of growing concern in competitive markets. In May 2021 the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on distortive foreign subsidies. It follows a 2020 white paper that identified gaps in the trade laws and put forward ways to close them. The draft regulation aims to tackle those foreign subsidies that have a distortive effect on the ...

Two decades after the entry into force of the General Product Safety Directive, the internal market is witnessing an increasing presence of products made with the use of or involving new technologies, online marketplaces are mushrooming, and a growing amount of products are entering the internal market from outside the European Union through these online marketplaces. Since the General Product Safety Directive does not have any provisions to guarantee that these products are safe for use, there are ...

Value added tax (VAT) fraud has an extensive impact on the European Union (EU) budget. As missing trader intra-community (MTIC) fraud is the biggest kind of VAT fraud it would be beneficial to fight this kind of fraud to a larger extent.

The single market programme is a new, dedicated €3.7 billion (in 2018 prices) or €4.2 billion (in current prices) programme for the 2021-2027 period supporting the single market. It is particularly aimed at empowering and protecting consumers, and enabling Europe's many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to take better advantage of a well-functioning single market. On 3 May 2021, the Regulation establishing the programme entered into force, with retroactive application from 1 January 2021. ...

In 2018, under the new Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021-2027, the Commission put forward a proposal for a programme aimed at improving the functioning of the single market, at fostering the competitiveness of companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and at ensuring the provision of high quality statistics in all EU policy areas. Following an early second-reading agreement reached on 8 December 2020, Parliament is expected to formally adopt the text at second ...

Due to the worsening epidemiological situation, EU leaders met on 25 March 2021 in a series of video-conferences instead of a two-day physical meeting. The top priority was the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, notably through increasing production, delivery and deployment of vaccines. Another highlight of the European Council meeting was the exchange of views with the President of the United States, Joe Biden – the first such meeting for 11 years – which focused on the coronavirus pandemic ...

EPRS invites leading experts and commentators to share their thinking and insights on important features of the European Union as a political and economic system. In this paper, Iain Begg, Professorial Research Fellow at the London School of Economics (LSE), reflects on the distinctive characteristics of the EU as the world's leading exemplar of regional economic integration, and its unique experience since the 1950s in generating collective public goods for its Member States as a foundation for ...

This At A Glance summarises the key findings of the original study, which assesses the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the Internal Market and consumer protection, including the impact of measures introduced at national and EU level to mitigate the consequences of the pandemic. What further measures should be considered in order to reinforce the resilience of the EU's Internal Market in the face of future crises? This document was provided by the Policy Department for Economic, Scientific and Quality ...

This briefing finds that the European Commission's impact assessment (IA), which accompanies the directive proposal on the resilience of critical entities, provides a good evidence-based problem definition and a sufficiently broad range of options. The assessment is mostly qualitative, due to difficulties in quantification. The IA could have been more transparent in its description of stakeholder views, and could have provided due references and a link to the feasibility study which has supported ...