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IMI Awareness Raising Conference: "The IMI Network and the Services Directive – Connecting administrations, building trust" (25 February 2009)

Administrative cooperation between Member States is essential to create a borderless Single Market. For that reason the Services Directive requires Member States to work closely together by providing mutual assistance and exchanging information. The Member States, in close cooperation with the Commission, have to set up a fully operational network of administrative cooperation by the Directive's implementation deadline end 2009. This is both an important and challenging task requiring a high level of preparations by all actors involved. To make sure we are all ready in time for the end 2009 deadline, a pilot project will be launched in January 2009 and work will gradually intensify throughout the year.

The "IMI Awareness-Raising Conference" marks the start of the launching of the IMI Services Directive pilot project. It takes place at a key point in time, as the first exchanges of information on services in IMI will start as from March 2009. The event will take place in Brussels on 25 February 2009 and can cater for up to 400 participants.

Scope TOP »TOP

The event is conceived as a large awareness-raising conference targeted at Member States officials. With the leitmotiv "Connecting Administrations - Building Trust", the conference aims to create a good understanding of the importance of effective administrative cooperation to make the Services Directive work in practice and of the need to devote substantial resources and efforts to this end. At the end of the conference participants should be aware of the importance of building up momentum in their national administration and actively participating in the IMI Services pilot to make it a success.

The conference aims to reach out to the people who will play a significant role in the functioning of the IMI network for the Services Directive in your Member State. It is not open to the public and does not aim at promoting IMI to a broader group of stakeholders who are not directly involved in the setting-up and day-to-day management of IMI. Priority for registration will be given to:

  • IMI Coordinators for the Services Directive, who will be in charge of setting-up of the IMI network for the Services Directive in their country
  • "Super-users", who will be responsible for providing training sessions and technical support in their country ("training the trainers")
  • Competent authorities who will be directly involved in administrative cooperation. Besides authorities that form part of the central government, Member States should also consider, where applicable, to invite representative organisations at regional/local level (such as representative organisations of communes) or professional organisations, who can play an important role as competent authorities for services.

Agenda TOP »TOP

The conference will start with an introductory plenary session in the morning, followed by a buffet lunch and the opportunity to network with colleagues responsible for the functioning of the IMI network for services in other countries.

In the afternoon, the programme will focus on the importance of administrative cooperation for the Services Directive. Through concrete examples, participants will become familiar with the way IMI can support authorities in fulfilling their legal obligation for mutual assistance under the Services Directive.

For more details, see the agenda PDF

Registration TOP »TOP

All participants must register as soon as possible via the following website:

Deadline for registrations: 19 February 2009.

You will receive a computer-generated acknowledgement immediately after on-line registration and at a later date you will receive a confirmation of your participation by email. Please note that the online registration does not yet signify a definite conference participation, as each registration will have to be confirmed by the Commission, subject to availability of places.

Privacy Statement PDF

Venue TOP »TOP

The 'IMI Awareness Conference’ will be held in Brussels, Belgium:

170, rue de la Loi
BE - 1049 Brussels

(closest metro/bus stop: Schuman)

Practical information and contact details TOP »TOP

For an overview of all practical information related to the event, please click here PDF.

Background information on IMI TOP »TOP

The Internal Market Information System (IMI) is an electronic information exchange network developed by the European Commission in close cooperation with the 27 EU Member States and the 3 European Economic Area (EEA) States. IMI sets out to support day-to-day administrative cooperation between public administrations in the internal market. It helps competent authorities to overcome important practical barriers to communication such as differences in administrative and working cultures, different languages and a lack of clearly identified partners in other Member States. The aim of IMI is to provide an efficient and effective information system which lowers the unit cost of communication between Member States.

IMI is designed as a single information system which can potentially support many different Community acts. As a first step, a pilot project was launched in early 2008 to support the cooperation between competent authorities in relation to the recognition of professional qualifications. The aim of the Professional Qualifications Directive pilot, which was limited to four professions , was to assess whether IMI was fit for purpose. At the end of 2008, Member States had registered some 425 competent authorities with over 900 users and more than 340 information requests were sent through IMI.

On 7 November 2008, the European Commission adopted a Progress Report on IMIPDF in the form of a Commission Communication. Building on the positive evaluation of the IMI pilot project, a decision was taken to extend the use of IMI to seven more professions in November 2008. For the recognition of professional qualifications, IMI is no longer a pilot project – it is now considered to be an operational network.

The key priority for 2009 is the preparation of a Services Directive module within IMI. The mutual assistance provisions of the Services Directive require Member States to supply the information requested by other Member States by electronic means and within the shortest possible period. An IMI Service Directive pilot project will start in January 2009 and continue until 28 December 2009, at which date IMI must be fully operational for the Services Directive. For that reason, Member States are invited to participate fully and actively in the pilot project from the beginning of 2009 in order to be ready to comply with their mutual assistance obligations by the transposition date.

Last update: 05-Feb-2009