Brexit

03-06-2015

The UK’s EU referendum: On the path to Brexit?

Following the Conservative Party’s victory in the 2015 general election, the UK is set to hold an in/out referendum on its membership of the European Union before the end of 2017.
07-05-2015

Europe ‘à la carte’: The whats and whys behind UK opt-outs

Since becoming a member in 1973, the United Kingdom has negotiated opt-outs on key parts of EU legislation, and a sizeable rebate from the EU annual budget. But do they really serve the best interests of the UK and Europe?
Britain at a crossroads
11-03-2015

Voting on Brexit: The EU issues shaping the UK election

The May 7 UK general election will go a long way towards deciding whether Britain will stay in the European Union, or choose to leave, after forty years of uneasy relations.
Med & South 25-01-2013

Euroscepticism: More than a British phenomenon

With Prime Minister David Cameron having vowed to hold a referendum on UK membership of the EU, Britain's penchant for EU bashing is well publicised. But there are political parties in other member states which are far from in love with the European project, and whose stance against integration has been fanned by the worsening of the economic crisis.
Transport 24-09-2012

Europe’s rails: A bumpy ride to a single market

Two decades into the European single market, getting people or goods from one part of the European Union to another on trains remains a challenge – despite rail's potential in reducing traffic pollution and congestion. The European Commission is considering new ways to reach the end station of a common railway market.
11-06-2009

Small Business Act: Unlocking SMEs’ potential?

In 2008, the EU adopted a US-style 'Small Business Act' for Europe to improve market conditions for small and medium-sized enterprises and boost the economy. However, SME groups continue to be critical of implementation at national level despite the European Commission highlighting progress by member states.
12-05-2009

Crossing borders: A tall order for SMEs

The internal European market offers companies access to a market of 500 million people, yet a strikingly low number of small and medium-sized enterprises are making best use of the opportunities available.
01-04-2009

Financial regulation: The EU’s agenda

In response to the worst crisis in decades, the European Union has agreed on a series of rules and new watchdogs to regulate and supervise global financial markets. EURACTIV offers an overview of the state of play.
25-07-2008

Banking services: Time for consumers to benefit?

Consumers take centre stage in the Commission's Green Paper on Retail Financial Services, which lays down options on how to make retail banking and insurance services better and cheaper for EU citizens. However, the Commission, Parliament and industry are at odds over how to improve consumer protection and choice in retail financial services.
25-01-2008

Single Payments Area

In the European single market there are still large differences between the national payment systems. The EU seeks to remove these obstacles and reduce the costs to cross-border payments for consumers by creating a Single Euro(pean) Payments Area (SEPA). The European Payments Council (EPC) was set up to develop a common infrastructure and standards. However, there is only little progress, since banks are reluctant to apply standards and fear competition being opened up to non-banks, which makes it difficult to reach the 2010 target. Therefore, the Commission has laid out a common legal framework in its 2005 proposal.
21-01-2008

eCommerce: A market without borders?

Although eCommerce in Europe doubles every three years, sales remain primarily at national level due to low consumer trust in cross-border purchases. The European Commission and the European Parliament are carrying out legislative reviews of the EU's eCommerce Directive to address shortfalls.
06-11-2006

Introduction to Financial Services

The aim of the European Union's policy in the financial services sector is to create an integrated Europe-wide single market through a framework of legislation, co-operation and practice within which financial services can operate as a whole across borders to achieve the free movement of capital and services. The policy addresses the "wholesale" (corporate and capital) markets and the "retail" (consumer) markets as well as the underpinning services such as the clearing and settlement of shares and integration of payment systems.