Making Europe more competitive
We believe in the European single market; it’s essential for improving Europe’s competitiveness. Europe must complete the single market for services while pursuing the digital agenda to ensure it reaches its full potential as a global leader in the digital market.
At the same time, we believe in the re-industrialisation of Europe. Europe must enhance its industrial competitiveness, without placing an excessive regulatory burden on businesses.
Europe also needs a sustainable joint energy policy with a functioning common market for energy based on market principles that pool our purchasing power. Along with investment in cross-border energy infrastructure, this would lead to greater security, independence and diversity of our energy supply, while driving competitive and affordable energy prices that contribute to growth and jobs.
Investing in the future
Europe must create an environment that is friendly for SMEs, providing the best financial and legal conditions for start-up businesses. After all, companies and small businesses need access to credit at similar and affordable interest rates, including through modern financial instruments such as venture capital, crowdfunding and project bonds as well as EU-level and national public procurement and funding.
We also demand an EU framework that allows companies to invest more in research and development. The Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), for instance, should focus further on innovation, investment, jobs and growth in Europe.
Europe's more than 350 billion Euro budget for structural policies until 2020 is key to providing investment, competitiveness and solidarity, and must be used to encourage growth. At the same time, Europe must act responsibly today to avoid overburdening future generations.
Supporting future generations
The European economy must be committed to the principle of the Social Market Economy, a model combining social awareness with dynamic market principles, which has, in the last decades, ensured high living standards and social/health benefits to all European citizens in need. Jobs, growth and business are the three pillars of the Social Market Economy.
The EU has to promote preventive measures to support the health of EU citizens – in particular fostering healthy lifestyles. Effective joint EU efforts are needed to decrease the financial and social burdens of non-communicable diseases such as cancer.
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- Esther DE LANGE
- Chair - WG Economy and Environment
- +32 (0)2 28 45954