On March 20, ESBA Secretary General Patrick Gibbels spoke at a Lunch debate on the possibilities and difficulties of the Service e-card proposal organised European Entrepreneurs CEA-PME, supported by ESBA.
The debate focused on the potential effects, both positive and negative, of the adoption of the service e-card proposals. The ardent supporters (EPP MEPs, the Commission and some stakeholders associations) see in the e-card directive a first step in the direction of a well-functioning Internal Market, a tool that will enable business to do administrative procedures in their own language.
On the other hand, the critics worry that the legislative proposals are not ambitious enough and do not bring any added value to what is already there (and poorly implemented) such as the Service Directive with its Single Points of Contact. Mr. Gibbels stated that the severely watered down version of what could have been an ambitious e-card, has the potential to create confusion by adding another ‘optional’ layer on an already complicated administrative and regulatory environment.
The construction sector in particular voiced strong concerns about the potential of the e-card to enable fraudulent practices.
The discussion served as a platform to hear a wide array of views on the proposals on which the IMCO committee will vote tomorrow (the 21st of March).