Single market emergency instrument: Protecting the single market in future crises

Briefing 04-09-2023

In 2023, the EU celebrates the 30th anniversary of the single market. Recent shocks have shown not only how vulnerable to crises the single market is, but also the extent to which the EU economy relies on a well-functioning single market. It is now considered to be a key driver of EU resilience. In September 2022, the Commission put forward a single market emergency instrument (SMEI) package. It includes one main proposal for a regulation establishing a SMEI, and two accompanying proposals amending harmonised product legislation to ensure that strategic goods can be marketed quickly to address shortages in the event of market crises. The main proposal establishes measures for contingency planning, such as an early warning system. A 'vigilance mode' could be activated after a threat has been identified. If a wide-ranging crisis hits the single market, an 'emergency mode' could be triggered. The proposal is now in the hands of the co-legislators. In the European Parliament, the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) is responsible for the file. It adopted its report on 18 July 2023. The report will be put to the vote in plenary in September 2023, fixing the Parliament's position for negotiations with the Council, which adopted its mandate on 7 June 2023. Second edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.