Research Handbook on the Economics of European Union Law

Research Handbook on the Economics of European Union Law

Research Handbooks in Law and Economics series

Edited by Thomas Eger and Hans-Bernd Schäfer

The Handbook focuses particularly on how the development of EU law negotiates the tension between market integration, national sovereignty and political democracy. The book begins with chapters examining constitutional issues, while further chapters address the establishment of a single market. The volume also addresses sovereign debt problems by providing a detailed analysis of the architecture of the EU’s monetary institutions, its monetary policy and their implications.

Chapter 6: Mutual Recognition: Economic and Regulatory Logic in Goods and Services

Jacques Pelkmans

Subjects: law - academic, european law, law and economics


Jacques Pelkmans* 1 INTRODUCTION AND PURPOSE Mutual recognition (MR) is one of the most appreciated innovations of the EU. The idea is that one can pursue market integration, indeed ‘deep’ market integration, while respecting ‘diversity’ amongst the participating countries. Put differently, in pursuing ‘free movement’ for goods in the EU internal market and hence going beyond merely removing tariffs and quotas, mutual recognition facilitates free movement by disciplining the nature and scope of ‘regulatory barriers’, whilst allowing some degree of regulatory discretion for the EU Member States. Compared with alternative options of ‘deepening’ market integration, this solution is attractive and, in principle, welfare increasing. Mutual recognition might also be appreciated because, in avoiding EU regulation, it tends to limit centralisation, while facilitating ‘regulatory competition’ between Member States and, possibly, lowering the costs of the incredible regulatory heterogeneity business faces in the EU internal market. Nevertheless, mutual recognition is many things to many people.1 The present contribution will not cast the net so wide. The focus will be on the successful and far-reaching examples of the EU internal market for goods and services. The chapter attempts to explain (1) the rationale and logic of mutual recognition in the EU internal goods market (Section 2), (2) its working in actual practice in the EU for more than 25 years, culminating in a qualitative benefit/cost analysis (Section 4) and (3) its recent improvement in terms of ‘governance’ in the so-called 2008 Goods Package (Section 5), thereby ameliorating the benefits/costs ratio. Lest it be...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information