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About this site

Welcome to the EU Single Market thematic website on EUROPA. This page provides you with important information to assist you in using and getting the most out of this site.

Terminology

In this website we prefer to use the term “Single Market” rather than the official designation of “Internal Market” because we believe that this wording is more resonant for a wider audience. However, note that the term used in official documents – such as the Treaty and other legislative texts – is and continues to be “Internal Market”.

Who is behind this site?

The EU Single Market thematic website on EUROPA is managed by the Internal Market and Services Directorate General (DG MARKT), one of the departments which make up the European Commission.

Objectives

The key objective of our website is to increase knowledge of and support for the EU Single Market among interested citizens, businesses, journalists and other stakeholders by providing users with clear, up to date and easily navigable information in at least three languages (English, French and German).

Contents

The Single Market is a broad concept embracing many EU policies. These policies are developed and managed by a number of Directorates General across the European Commission. Details of these specific policies can therefore be found on their sites.

Nonetheless, our website aims to provide comprehensive information on the Commission’s work in the area of Internal Market. It primarily focuses on the work of the Internal Market and Services Directorate General, but it also provides links to the relevant pages of other Directorates General’s websites dealing with Single Market issues.

Our navigation system groups information into three main categories:

  1. Single Market policies
  2. Interactive info and help
  3. Who we are

1. Single Market policies

this area features 7 main headings:

  • General policy framework
  • Living and working in the Single Market
  • A Single Market for goods
  • A Single Market for services
  • A Single Market for capital
  • Business environment
  • Intellectual property

The first heading deals with the overall Commission policy for the Single Market, comprising topics such as the Internal Market strategy, the monitoring role of the Commission on the application of Internal Market rules, and the worldwide implications of Single Market developments. All the sub-domains under this heading fall within the remit of DG Internal Market and Services.

The next top-level entries focus on the “four freedoms” provided by the Single Market: the free movement of people, goods, services and capital.

Please note that the policy areas related to free movement of people (apart from those concerning freedom of establishment and the recognition of professional qualifications which we are directly responsible for) fall within the remit of DG Justice, Freedom and Security and DG Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities. The policy areas related to free movement of goods are the responsibility of DG Enterprise and Industry. Our website simply provides short introductory texts for these themes, giving visitors the option to click to the sites of the above-mentioned Directorates General for more in-depth information.

All the policy areas related to free movement of services fall within the remit of DG Internal Market and Services except for “Trans-European Networks” which are the responsibility of DG Transport and Energy and – in the case of telecom services – of DG Information Society. Free movement of capital is also an area for which our DG is responsible.

The sections Business environment and Protection of rights cover a range of horizontal policies aimed at ensuring the proper functioning of the Single Market. All the sub-domains under these headings fall within the remit of DG Internal Market and Services. Nevertheless, the introductory texts to these sections provide external links to the websites of other Directorates General for subjects such as competition, taxation and consumer protection.

2. Interactive info and help

The second main area of our left-hand menu introduces citizens and businesses to a range of services, interactive communication tools and sources of practical information on their rights and opportunities in the Single Market.

3. Who we are

This area offers a link to the website of the European Commissioner in charge of Internal Market and Services, and provides information about the mission and organization of our Directorate General.

News coverage

Please note that the page What’s new and the news items announced on the home page only cover the policy areas under the responsibility of DG Internal Market & Services.

This means that if you wish to keep up to date on policy areas which fall outside the remit of our DG, you have to consult the appropriate specialised website.

For news about:

Linguistic policy

This website adheres to the general language guidelines set out for EUROPA which recommend, where possible, to provide the public with the information they are looking for in their own language.

However, in view of the resource implications of managing a site in twenty-three languages and in order to provide up-to-date information quickly, the choice made for this site was to focus resources on getting the information on line in real time in at least three languages: English, French and German.

Linked documents are provided in as many languages as possible. Official documents are available in all the languages which were official at the date of publication. Other linked documents, of a non-legally binding nature and a more specialized content, may be offered in fewer languages.

Tools

When navigating this site, you may need specific software to view some files. Many documents available for downloading on this website are published as PDF documents. The Adobe® Reader® lets you view and print PDF files on all major computer platforms. This software can be downloaded for free.

Privacy Disclaimer

As stated in the general Legal Notice covering the EU institutional websites, the European Union is committed to user privacy. You can browse most of this website without giving any information about yourself. However, in some cases, personal information is required in order to provide the e-services you request. In particular, if you use the Google Custom Search featured on this website, you should be aware that Google uses cookies and other technologies to deliver its services and that data about your access behaviour are automatically transferred to it.