Brussels, 12 July 2007
The European Commission has put forward measures which would simplify the business environment for EU companies in the areas of company law, accounting and auditing. The proposed measures, which are set out in a Communication, would remove or reduce a range of administrative requirements that are considered outdated or excessive. All interested parties are invited to comment on the proposals by mid-October 2007.
Internal Market and Services Commissioner Charlie McCreevy said: "If we want to enable European businesses to compete in today's global market, we need to cut red tape. Many EU rules on company law and accounting are more than twenty years old and place unnecessary burdens on EU businesses. We now need to ask how they could be improved to meet today's requirements."
Proposed simplification measures
The Commission would like to know stakeholders’ views on a range of possible simplification measures. The key measures under consideration are:
On the basis of discussions with Member States, the European Parliament and stakeholders, the Commission will carry out full and comprehensive impact assessments, which will also take account of administrative costs.
Comments can be sent directly to Markt-F2@ec.europa.eu.
The European Council of March 2007 underlined the importance of reducing administrative burdens for EU businesses. The Commission has outlined the way for achieving this objective by adopting a simplification programme (http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/regulation/better_regulation/index_en.htm).
European company law, accounting and auditing have been identified as priority areas within this initiative. First analyses carried out by a number of Member States have shown that administrative costs caused by EU rules in these areas are particularly high.
The Communication should also be seen in the context of the Commission's forthcoming review of the Single Market, which is part of the "Citizens' Agenda". The final report on this initiative will be presented in autumn 2007.
The Communication is available at