Recommendations of the Austrian economy for a resilient, competitive single market that unlocks its full potential


In the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the EU single market, The Austrian Federal Economic Chamber published a factsheet "An unfinished milestone of integration" and a catalogue "Recommendations of the Austrian economy for a resilient, competitive single market". These documents contain the most important demands of the Austrian business community for a functioning internal market.

The EU's single market is one of the greatest achievements of European integration. It now covers 27 countries with a population of around 450 million. It is estimated that the EU single market has created 56 million additional jobs in Europe, that 70 per cent of goods exports are made by small and medium-sized enterprises, and that trade in goods accounts for around 25 per cent of the European Union's gross domestic product. There is still potential, especially in the services sector. The EU's internal market is at the heart of Europe, but it faces many challenges in the face of current global uncertainties. Recent crises such as the Covid pandemic, the war in Ukraine and the energy crisis show how fragile the EU internal market can be in times of crisis.

Moreover, the main obstacles to cross-border activity in the EU internal market remain restrictive national and complex regulations, non-compliance and circumvention of European rules, poor transposition and application of the Services Directive, national requirements restricting the free movement of goods, an increasing tendency towards national protectionism and the implementation of indirectly discriminatory measures against investors from other EU Member States, different tax systems and problems with the posting of workers and public procurement procedures.

The European Union depends on a well-functioning single market. The 30th anniversary should be used as an opportunity to work on the further development and deepening of the EU internal market in order to secure it for the future.