EU Single market lacks commitment, says OECD

Lack of political commitment, national regulations, rigidity and poor implementation of existing EU rules are all blamed for holding back cross-border economic activity, growth and job creation, OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said in a report published today.

In a week when Euro area finance ministers are meeting to boost the firepower of the European stability funds to at least one trillion euros, "weak financial conditions,  fiscal consolidation and economic adjustment are restricting  demand  in the short-term before the long-term benefits on stability and growth are felt,” Mr Gurría said. “Decisive action to restore confidence and support demand is needed now.”

To boost economic activity at EU level, the Secretary-General suggests a step change in the political commitment to the Single Market was needed with greater progress in opening services markets.  His report calls for an annual review for each country of the obstacles to benefiting fully from a market of 500 million consumers.

Despite some 24 million unemployed people across Europe, most EU countries expect growing skill shortages in certain sectors. Labour mobility within Europe is low, and the Report called for the EU to encourage migration in order to help workers and firms to achieve the most productive job matches

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