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No 16 (March 99/Mars 99/März 99)
Would you like to do business in the
European Single Market?
Do you need advice on how to certify your product?
Need a business partner in the EU?
Want to know about bidding
for public contracts?
On 25 January 1999, a One Stop Internet Shop was launched by the European Commission as part of its permanent Dialogue with Business. It is intended for businesses who want to find answers quickly to questions about the business environment and opportunities in the Single Market. It is a practical and accessible tool for businesses which can be used, free of charge, as a gateway to data, information and advice from many existing sources in the eleven languages of the European Union.
"The One Stop Internet Shop aims to give business better and easier access to information and advice on Single Market rules and opportunities", said Single Market Commissioner Mario Monti. "Such information and advice are essential to allow business to take full advantage of the Single Market. We also expect the Internet Shop to provide us with valuable feedback from business on the problems companies encounter in the Single Market, which will help us to improve the Single Market framework further". The need for such information and advice was confirmed, for example, by opinion surveys of companies which identified the absence of information on Single Market rules as a significant obstacle to cross border activity.
However, the Dialogue with Business is not a stand-alone initiative it is closely linked with the Dialogue with Citizens and part of the Commission's Europe Direct initiative. It achieves one of the aims of the Single Market Action Plan through providing user-friendly access to information and advice about the Single Market which is relevant to business - in particular SMEs. It also helps to collect feedback from business with a view to identifying ways in which the operation of the Single Market can be improved. The Commission's net work of Euro Info Centres (EICs) as a source business advice and assistance for SMEs will play a key role to this respect.
The One Stop Internet Shop aims to enable businesses, and particularly SMEs, to surmount the "Tower of Babel" situation which arises from the existence of many diverse internet sources of information and advice for doing business in the Single Market. It is often not easy for economic operators to find the right information and get help when they encounter practical difficulties.
This is why the One Stop Internet Shop makes a pre-selection of existing websites (or parts of them) which are relevant for firms operating in the Single Market. Instead of surfing on the net for hours in order to find the right information and advice from different sources, companies can "bookmark" the website and use it as starting point from which they could gain access to all the necessary information and advice resources at European, national, regional and local level. In this way, the One Stop Internet Shop for Business becomes the portal to business information in the EU.
Free and in eleven languages
The One Stop Internet Shop for Business offers:
A vital component of the Dialogue is the possibility for companies to give feedback on the difficulties they encounter when exercising their rights in the Single Market. This feedback is needed in order to identify ways in which the operation of the Single Market can be further improved.
Despite the launch being so recent, the first feedback from businesses has started to arrive in the "Dialogue with Business" mailbox. The development of a fully operational feedback mechanism (based on the EIC network) and the analysis of this feedback will be an important issue for the coming months. Moreover, new areas of specialised information will be added to the site shortly.
In the meantime, in your capacity as a "European Multiplier" can help us to promote the Business Dialogue and more particularly the One Stop Internet Shop by disseminating this information through your channels (networks, business organisations, etc.).
Jobst von Kirchmann
TEL.: (+32 2) 2965824
FAX: (+32 2) 2954351
La Commission européenne a ouvert sur Internet un guichet
unique destiné aux entreprises souhaitant en savoir plus sur les
règles du Marché unique et sur les possibilités qu'il
Für alle, die Näheres über die
unternehmerischen Rahmenbedingungen und Möglichkeiten im Binnenmarkt
erfahren wollen, hat die Europäische Kommission im Rahmen ihres Dialogs
mit den Unter nehmen einen ,,One Stop Internet Shop für die Wirtschaft"
eingerichtet. Dieses praktische Instrument gibt in elf Sprachen kostenlosen
Zugang zu Daten, Informationen und individueller Beratung.Es bietet u.a.
direkten Zugang zu über 230 Euro-Info-Zentren, zu
Ausschreibungsbekanntmachungen (über die Datenbank TED = "Tenders
Electronic Daily"), zu Kontaktstellen für Unternehmen in den Behörden
der Mitgliedstaaten und zu einem kostenlosen Über set zungs dienst. Ziel
des Dialogs ist es, durch bessere Information und Analyse des Feedbacks von
Unternehmen die Funktions weise des Binnenmarktes weiter zu verbessern.