Profession to benefit from EU single market

Link: EU states demand standards delay

The Financial Times has reported seeing draft legislation, due to be made public in December, that aims to tackle the bureaucracy that binds companies trying to operate abroad.

The accountancy industry is among those left in the slow lane of cross-border trade by barriers of red tape that complicate access to the single market.

ICAEW communications director Brian Bannister said: ‘We think the UK accountancy profession has potential to provide even more professional services than it is currently able to do and this policy which will open up the market.’

The draft proposes to prevent member states from making companies follow their rules instead of the firms’ own country of origin’s. Other measures include dismantling advertising restrictions by outlawing ‘prohibitions on commercial communications for regulated professionals’.

John Davis, head of business law at ACCA, said the proposal would save companies from ‘nasty surprises’ brought about by unfamiliarity with foreign laws. ‘We welcome the proposal, which would create far more certainty for UK firms,’ he said.

The European Commission hopes to create a ‘genuine internal market for services by 2010’, but the measures will first require approval from both the European Parliament and member states.

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