Author(s): Economic and Financial Committee (EFC)
Despite progress in implementing the internal market programme and the introduction of the euro, the EU still does not have a fully integrated financial market. Much has been achieved on the road towards integration, but there is more work still to do.
The European Council at Lisbon set the key strategic goal for the EU to become by 2010 ‘the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world’. As recognised by Heads of State and Government, a crucial element to achieve this goal is a more integrated financial market which can act as a catalyst for growth across all sectors of the economy and enhance productivity . As a result of further integration, consumers will benefit from lower prices and better quality products; SMEs and other enterprises will benefit from lower borrowing costs and improved opportunities for risk-sharing.