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Amended proposal on services in the internal market

Amended proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on services in the internal market
Brussels, 4.4.2006
COM(2006) 160

The Commission adopted its proposal on 13 January 2004. It was formally transmitted to the European Parliament and to the Council on 6 February 2004. The Committee of the Regions gave its opinion on 29 September 2004 and the European Economic and Social Committee gave its opinion on 9 February 2005. The European Parliament adopted a legislative resolution at its first reading on 16 February 2006, and proposed amendments to the Commission proposal.

The new proposal in a nutshell

The main development is that the 'country of origin' principle has been replaced by the 'free circulation of services'.

Service providers will now be subject to the rules of their host country. The proposal abolishes a series of obstacles to the free circulation of services, except for reasons related to public policy, public security, the protection of public health and the environment.

Furthermore, in line with the European Parliament's amendments, the new proposal does not affect labour law nor deal with the posting of workers. In order to facilitate relations between the service providers and the authorities concerned, the 'one-stop-shop' has been maintained and even reinforced.

With regard to the scope of the directive, numerous sectors have been excluded from the proposal, namely financial services, telecommunications, as well as transport and port services. However, services of general interest, such as water and energy distribution, waste treatment, and social services with an economic dimension remain within the directive's scope.

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