Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2016-02-24-Speech-1-153-000"

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"Madam President, I would like to thank the Council – in the person of our former colleague from Parliament – for being here with us on this important debate. The single market is a precious resource which the European Union’s current and future economic prosperity depends upon. The untapped potential of the single market, estimated at EUR 1 trillion in value, is both an opportunity and a wake-up call to ensuring the single market works to benefit us all. I think it is a great pity that we have continued to miss out on these advances for over 20 years, especially in the light of the ever-growing internationalisation and global competition that we face. The single market has great potential to boost jobs and growth, and this prospect has been widely acknowledged at an EU level. However, despite repeated calls to strengthen the single market in the Council and in annual growth surveys and country-specific recommendations, not enough progress has been achieved so far. In order to effectively deliver on jobs and growth and competitiveness, the progress of integration of the single market and Member States must be accompanied with better governance and greater transparency of the process. Including the single market under the European Semester could help us achieve this goal. Regular, structured compliance dialogue with Member States, proper involvement of the European Parliament, inclusive and non-discriminatory approaches to all EU Member States, euro and non-eurozone, Member States’ national parliaments and all stakeholders, is crucial for transparency, governance and ownership, and ultimately for the success of the process. I also believe it is the enforcement and implementation of already existing EU legislation by all 28 Member States that is key to unlocking the full potential of the single market: overcoming unnecessary non-tariff obstacles, proper implementation of the Services Directive, proper and timely transposition and implementation of public procurement and concessions legislation, modernising public administrations, providing more and better accessible digital services for citizens and businesses – and these are just a few examples where already-existing EU legislation is not yet properly implemented. They are stalling the development of the single market across the European Union. Change cannot and should not only come from the top. All players need to embrace a single market compliance culture and work in a cooperative partnership. Such multi-level ownership needs to be supported by adequate training, assistance and dedicated resources and accessible information at all levels. I have tried to address these features in my report, and overall I am pleased with the final text. I would like to thank the shadows for their contributions; although we did not always agree on everything, I think we managed to reach an agreement in the end. I would also note that it is my firm belief – and hopefully that of many of my colleagues – that one of the reasons we are here as Members of the European Parliament is to ensure that we pass and adopt transparent, appropriate and fair laws. Since the Treaty of Lisbon entered into force, Parliament has more say over what and how legislation is adopted at EU level, and we need to use this influence as the only democratically-elected EU institution to ensure we adopt better regulations and better regulatory principles. That is why on behalf of my Group, I am asking for a slight change of wording in paragraph 46, via an amendment. This is to ensure that the better regulation principle is duly referred to in this report, as better governance and greater transparency of the process equates to an enhanced functioning of the single market for consumers and businesses alike. I hope I can count on your support, colleagues, to support the amendment and the text as a whole, and I thank you for your cooperation."@en1

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