Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-03-28-Speech-3-235"

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". Madam President, on behalf of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, I am shadow rapporteur of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection, but I should like to point out that we started this dossier in the Internal Market Committee to prevent football from disintegrating – which was a real risk at the time – with a possible second Bosman case, namely the Charleroi case. I should like to thank the working party, particularly Mr Belet, for their good cooperation, which has now put before us what I see as an even-handed proposal, one that covers all aspects of the professional sport and in which we send a clear warning to all interested parties to do something about the situation that has come about over the years, in which it does seem as if professional sport is above the law until such time as a case is brought before the European Court, and then we speak about an economic entity with social and cultural values. The European rules must, however, be complied with. I would therefore ask the Commission whether it shares my view that we leave amateur sports out of the equation, but that professional sport is an entertainment industry which should probably even fall within the Services Directive, and that an internal market should probably eventually be created for these services, for this entertainment industry. After all, we are not discussing what is happening on the pitch, but outside of it, particularly the financial players around it. Competition at European level reveals very many discrepancies, because there are differences in interpretation. What is this attributable to? Why has an internal market not been established yet and why is every club required to operate within the domestic market in order to be able to compete with each other at European level? As I see it, if the bodies involved refuse to regulate themselves, then politicians should step in. We are now sending a warning without wanting any fresh legislation – certainly not an exception – but a sign that the parties involved should solve their own problems and, if not, then I hope that the Commission will step in and say what should be done."@en1

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