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IP/09/1149

Brussels, 16 July 2008

Internal Market Scoreboard: Member States still on target but need to focus on correct application of rules

Member States continue to perform well in implementing agreed Internal Market rules into national law on time, according to the European Commission’s latest Internal Market Scoreboard. For the third consecutive time, 1.0% of Internal Market Directives for which the implementation deadline has passed are not currently written into national law. This means that Member States are again in line with the 1.0% target agreed by Heads of State, which was to be achieved by 2009 at the latest. In total, 18 Member States are either at or below the new target, while 13 Member States achieved their best score so far. Overall Denmark and Malta are the best performers, but Greece and Poland are bottom of the league. However, Member States too often fail to implement the rules correctly in national law and then to apply them properly once they are in force: the number of infringement cases remains high, and they take too long to resolve. This Scoreboard also devotes particular attention to the effective application of public procurement rules, recognising the importance of this area at the present time.

Internal Market and Services Commissioner Charlie McCreevy said: "In these challenging times, it is more important than ever that the Internal Market functions as effectively as possible. So I am delighted to see that the vast majority of Member States have continued their excellent performance from the previous Scoreboard in implementing agreed legislation into national law on time. However, this is only half the story. National laws need to be of high quality, and those applying the rules need to do it correctly. There are still too many instances of Member States failing in this regard. The Internal Market must be allowed to play its role in returning the European economy to growth as quickly as possible."

Implementation of Internal Market Directives

  • At 1.0%, the average transposition deficit – the percentage of Internal Market Directives that have not been implemented into national law in time – of the 27 Member States matches again the target deficit to be achieved by 2009 at the latest, and is well below the previous target of 1.5%. This consistently good performance appears to be based on real structural improvements in the way many Member States ensure timely transposition.

  • 10 out of the 17 Member States that reached the 1% target last time round have managed to reduce their deficits even further: Denmark, Malta, Bulgaria, Romania, Finland, Lithuania, Sweden, Ireland, Spain and France.

  • Denmark and Malta share first position, both being only 3 directives away from the perfect score. Most progress was made by Cyprus, followed by Luxembourg.

  • 6 out of the 9 Member States above the 1% ceiling have further increased their backlog: Estonia, Italy, the Czech Republic, Portugal, Poland and Greece. The Czech Republic posted the biggest deficit increase, having achieved its best ever result of 1.4% only 6 months ago.

  • Taking into account figures for correct transposition, the EU average deficit of directives that have not achieved their full effect jumps to 1.8%. Italy and Poland account for the highest number of directives not correctly transposed, followed by Spain and France.

  • 12 Member States are not in line with the 'zero tolerance' target for directives overdue by more than 2 years. Of these, 5 Member States have increased their deficit of such directives: Greece, Portugal, Italy, Austria and Finland. With 8 long-overdue directives, Luxembourg has by far the worst record in this area.

  • Looking ahead, some Member States will need to take drastic action to meet the 1% target next time, given the volume of legislation that will come on stream in the next 6 months and the number of high backlogs.

Infringements

  • The EU average of infringement cases remains high at 47 per Member State.

  • Substantial reductions in infringement procedures have been recorded in Italy (34%), Germany (26%) and Finland (25%) since May 2006, as well as in Cyprus (50%), Malta (22%) and Latvia (9%) since May 2007.

  • With 49%, Belgium posted the highest increase since May 2006, followed by the Netherlands and Ireland (both 21%).

  • For 5 of the EU-10, more infringement procedures are open against them now than in May 2007. This is the case for Poland (2%), the Czech Republic (11%), Slovenia (12%), Estonia (56%) and Slovakia (75%).

  • "Taxation and customs union" and "environment" remain the sectors with the highest number of cases, together accounting for almost 50% of infringement procedures.

Public procurement

Public procurement accounts for an important proportion of economic activity – over € 2,000 billion or around 17% of EU GDP in 2007. Local and cross-border competition in this area is delivering savings, with contracting authorities spending on average between 5-8% less than they had originally earmarked. This could translate into increases in GDP of between 0.08-0.12% (equivalent to 160,000-240,000 jobs) if continued over the next decade.

The full text of the latest Internal Market Scoreboard is available at:

http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/score/index_en.htm

Annex

Internal Market Scoreboard 19:

Transposition and implementation of Internal Market rules (details )

Transposition

EU-27 Member State transposition deficit, as at 11/05/2009 – 1606 directives

Ranking

1

2

2

2

5

6

7

7

9

9

11

12

12

12

12

16

17

17

17

20

20

22

23

23

25

26

27

Member State

DK

MT

BG

RO

FI

LT

SI

SK

NL

HU

SE

LV

DE

IE

ES

FR

AT

CY

UK

BE

EE

LU

IT

CZ

PT

PL

EL

EU

Transposition deficit (%)

0.2

0.2

0.3

0.3

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.6

0.6

0.6

0.7

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.9

1.0

1.1

1.2

1.4

1.7

1.7

1.9

2.0

2.1

2.1

1.0

Number of directives not transposed

3

3

5

5

6

7

7

7

9

10

10

12

13

13

13

13

15

16

18

20

23

27

28

30

32

33

34

Missing notifications to reach the 1% objective

1

3

6

10

11

13

15

16

17

EU-27 Member State performance in meeting 0% target for Directives whose transposition is over 2 years late, as at 11/05/2009

Member State

BG

DK

DE

EE

IE

ES

CY

LV

LT

HU

MT

NL

RO

SK

SE

FR

AT

SI

FI

IT

UK

BE

CZ

PL

PT

EL

LU

Number of directives not transposed

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

1

1

2

2

3

3

3

3

5

8

Infringement cases

EU-27 Member State number of open infringement proceedings, as at 1/05/2009

Member State

RO

CY

LT

SI

LV

BG

DK

EE

HU

MT

CZ

FI

LU

SK

SE

AT

NL

UK

PL

IE

PT

DE

FR

BE

EL

ES

IT

Number of open infringement cases

11

15

17

19

20

21

26

28

28

28

30

30

33

35

41

48

57

58

60

63

63

73

85

88

88

96

110


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