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TILEC Work in Progress: Panos Delimatsis

60 years of Rome, 10 years of the Services Directive: Integration through Judicial Interpretation
10:45-11:45, M 1003

The Services Directive has been the EU’s controversial reaction to the never-ending tale of completing the single market for services. An initially central piece of the Lisbon Strategy, the Directive ambitiously aims at the elimination of the remaining legal barriers to the achievement of the internal market for services, while ensuring legal certainty for service suppliers and consumers. The Directive operationalizes Articles 49 and 56 TFEU and thus consolidates six decades of case-law delivered by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). It is a dynamic legal instrument which includes various initiatives and additional measures to be undertaken in the wake of the implementation of the Directive, thereby calling for continuous communication and exchange of information among national authorities of member States. In this communication network, the role of the European Commission is to monitor and if necessary launch infringement proceedings.

This paper will review the first 10 years after the adoption of the Services Directive and the first few years after its enforcement. In this respect, it will argue that the Directive constitutes, along with EU primary law, an additional legal instrument to be used by the CJEU judges with a view to further pursuing the objectives of the fundamental freedoms of services and establishment. The second, arguably more important, level that the Directive operates relates to the transparency-enhancing and mutual-trust-building benefits from the implementation of the Directive, which should lead to important compensatory measures of formal and informal nature alike. On a pessimistic tone, then, the paper submits that the Directive will not serve as a vector for completing the single market in services anytime soon. In the end, its effectiveness will depend on the Member States’ discretion and the capacity of regulators to build trust despite regulatory competition within the EU.

When: 21 March 2018 10:45

End date: 21 March 2018 11:45

Where: Montesquieu building