2024 Eurochambres Single Market Survey: overcoming obstacles, developing solutions


The “2024 Eurochambres Single Market Survey: overcoming obstacles, developing solutions” presents a comprehensive evaluation of the barriers encountered in doing business across borders, shedding light on the obstacles hindering Europe's free movement. The findings demonstrate enduring market fragmentation, emphasising the urgent need for strategic interventions to propel economic growth.

Key business barriers identified include disparate contractual and legal practices, varying national service rules, and limited accessibility to information on differing rules/requirements. These are just some of the challenges contributing to a fragmented landscape for companies.

In the pursuit of a better functioning single market, business owners and entrepreneurs advocate for practical solutions. First, the reinforcement of centralised online portals that offer comprehensive and easy-to-obtain information for trading in the single market followed closely by streamlining bureaucratic processes, cutting red tape and mitigating reporting obligations. The report also underscores the importance of recognising and accommodating the unique challenges faced by SMEs. Finally, the report validates the fundamental role of European chambers of commerce and industry have in advising companies, making them more informed and strategic.

This report presents the findings of a comprehensive survey, conducted with the support of national chambers of commerce and industry between 4 September and 20 November 2023, which captures the insights and perspectives of 1004 business owners and entrepreneurs across all EU member states.

Similar surveys were conducted by Eurochambres in 2015 and 2019. The new edition contained an expanded list of obstacles and possible solutions and included additional questions on critical areas – costs of regulation and administrative procedures – allowing the respondents to articulate their perspectives with greater granularity and for Eurochambres to delve into the findings with unprecedented detail.

The survey findings contribute to efforts to enhance the overall efficiency of the single market by providing valuable insights into the practical challenges and needs of businesses and by enabling targeted policy responses. Aligning regulatory decisions with the realities of market operators, regardless of their size, is fundamental for fostering an ecosystem conducive to growth. By factoring these findings into policymaking, EU institutions can focus on untapping the potential of the single market, address long-lasting obstacles, facilitate free movement, and lay the ground for a resilient and fit-for-business future.