The European Commission is proposing a Single Market Information Tool (SMIT), as outlined in the Single Market Strategy of October 2015, that would enable us to gather information directly from selected market players.
Objective of the consultation
Experience from different policy fields, such as EU competition policy, shows that targeted and timely access to comprehensive, reliable, and accurate information is important to ensure compliance with EU law, as well as to identify regulatory and market failures.
The Single Market Information Tool would allow the Commission to request such information in cases of serious Single Market malfunctioning. The goal is to improve the enforcement of existing Single Market rules and to prepare proposals for effective policy intervention. To achieve this, the tool would be used to request information from firms such as cost structure, pricing policy, profits or employment contracts.
As outlined in the Single Market Strategy, the Single Market Information Tool would not be used as a matter of routine, but selectively and only in particularly important cases of cross-border Single Market malfunctioning. The use of the tool would be triggered only if a detailed analysis shows that other information sources are insufficient. Finally, the use of the tool would be adequate and proportionate to the objectives to be sought, taking into account the cost for responding firms and avoiding unnecessary administrative burdens.
Currently, it is often not possible to acquire information directly from the market for several reasons. In particular, information related to the implementation and application of certain Single Market rules may not be available to Member States, who are the Commission's primary source of information. Or, the Member States might not be able to share this information with the Commission. This is particularly evident in cases with a strong cross-border context, where a coordinated effort in requesting information from several Member States is necessary. Furthermore, although much data is collected at national and European level by public authorities, statistical offices, and other bodies, it is often insufficiently detailed or is disaggregated or is produced with a time delay.
With this consultation the Commission seeks the views of stakeholders on the utility and the design of this tool. Citizens and stakeholders are invited to provide feedback on their experience and knowledge of the problems highlighted above. The Commission will carefully analyse the feedback before deciding whether, and to what extent it should take further action. Input from stakeholders will be used in an Impact Assessment.
All citizens and organisations are welcome to contribute to this consultation. Contributions are particularly sought from:
- enterprises, business professionals, and business associations or organisations .
- institutions of national authorities.
- consumer organisations, research and academic institutions, and individual citizens.
How to submit your contribution
Please submit your contribution using one of the following online surveys:
- Submissions by businesses, professional associations/organisations, or chambers of commerce.
- Submissions by public authorities.
- Submissions by research or academic institutions, think tanks, organisations representing consumers, civil societies, NGOs and individual citizens.
- Submissions by other stakeholders.
The surveys are available in English, French and German. However, responses may be submitted in any official EU language.
In the interest of transparency, organisations are invited to provide the public with relevant information about themselves by registering in the Transparency Register and subscribing to its Code of Conduct. If the organisation is not registered, the submission will be published separately from the registered organisations.
The contributions received and the identity of the contributor will be published on this website, unless the contributor objects to publication of his/her personal data.
Please read the specific privacy statement (PDF, 13kB) for information on how your personal data and contribution will be dealt with.
Results of the consultation and next steps
The Commission will assess and summarise the results in a report, which will be made publicly available on this website. The results of this consultation will provide valuable input for the Commission when preparing any future policy proposals and assessing the impact of different policy options.
In addition to this public consultation, the Commission will hold targeted stakeholder workshops with associations representing business stakeholders and/or national public authorities in 2016.