On the 28th of October 2015, the European Commission presented its new Single Market Strategy. The European Small Business Alliance (ESBA) welcomes the new strategy, in particular the Commission's drive for a fairer and more integrated Single Market.
Additionally, ESBA is pleased with the specific focus placed on a number of practical measures to help SMEs and start-ups grow, expand and trade cross-border. However, it is important that the European Commission considers all SMEs and start-ups, and not solely those young, innovative and technology-focused ones.
One of the many obstacles SMEs face in the Single Market is complex VAT regulation. ESBA is pleased that, in addition to addressing this issue in the Digital Single Market Strategy, the European Commission will bring forward an Action Plan to reduce the administrative burdens of VAT by creating a simplified regulation for SMEs.
Furthermore, the lack of information and understanding of regulatory requirements are obstacles for SMEs and start-ups to make full use of the Single Market. Therefore, the European Commission will launch a Start-up Initiative which will help set up the Single Digital Gateway that was announced in the Digital Single Market Strategy. This Single Digital Gateway should facilitate cross-border operations of firms and provide information to small businesses and start-ups. ESBA welcomes this initiative. A lack of information is one of the main reasons holding back SMEs from trading across national borders.
ESBA welcomes the Single Market Strategy's aim to complete the Single Market for services by, for example, introducing a services passport and targeting regulatory barriers. This would allow professionals and service providers to access the markets in other Member States more easily.
David Caro, President of the European Small Business Alliance, commented that: ''ESBA welcomes the European Commission's renewed focus on better implementation and enforcement of both existing and new Single Market regulation in the Member States. We are pleased with the deepening partnership between the European Commission and the Member States which will ensure a practical delivery of the new strategy, and we are looking forward to more concrete proposals that will benefit small and micro businesses.