Chapter 4: Some thoughts on the internal market in a time of crisis
While the economic, financial, and sovereign debt crises led to a major overhaul of the EU’s and EMU’s economic governance, it had also profound implications on the EU’s internal market. Benefitting from the unique vantage point of Director-General Jonathan Faull, Chapter 4 investigates how during the economic crisis the Barroso II Commission affected the internal market for financial services in boosting Europe’s competitiveness. The Commission strove to ensure that investments are financed and bring about the sustainable growth and employment. The Chapter also points out that the crisis offered the Barroso Commission an opportunity in re-structuring the roles and relationships between various actors such as creditors, shareholders and taxpayers. Such changes would arguably make the European financial markets more effective and legitimate. This quest for legitimacy seems important because, as Faull argues, the Member States also need to face the social challenges that the economic turmoil accentuates. Very high unemployment and other long-term social issues such as aging population, increased immigration and the distribution of social benefits to non-nationals are examples of European challenges. Simultaneously, diversity seems to be increasing on numerous fronts. The role of the internal market thus seems fundamental in providing stability for a prosperous European future.
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