Friday, 29 October 2010

Europe: strengthening the single market

Earlier this week the European Commission published a Communication titled Towards a Single Market Act – for a highly competitive social market economy: see here (pdf). The Communication sets out 50 proposals the purpose of which is to strengthen the single market. Of particular interest are the following:

Proposal 14: The Commission will propose a review of the accounting Directives in 2011 to simplify financial reporting obligations and to reduce the administrative burden, especially for SMEs.

Proposal 16: The Commission will explore measures with the potential to encourage private investment – particularly in the long term – to make a more active contribution towards achieving the objectives of the Europe 2020 strategy. These measures might concern the reform of corporate governance and create incentives for the long-term, sustainable and responsible investment required by smart, green and inclusive growth.

Proposal 19: The Commission will take steps to improve the coordination of national tax policies, notably by proposing a Directive introducing a common consolidated corporate tax base (CCCTB) in 2011.

Proposal 21: In 2011 the Commission will propose legislation to introduce the linking of company registers.

Proposal 38: The Commission will launch a public consultation (Green Paper) on corporate governance. It will also launch public consultation on possible ways to improve the transparency of information provided by businesses on social and environmental matters and respect for human rights. These consultations could lead to legislative initiatives.

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