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EU - BUSINESSEUROPE's report: evaluating the Points of Single Contact

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The BUSINESSEUROPE’s report Are the Points of Single Contact (PSCs) truly making things easier for European companies? presents views of European companies on the functioning of the PSCs. BUSINESSEUROPE is an organisation that represents the interest of companies in 35 European countries vis-à-vis the European institutions. It has been closely following the implementation of the Services Directive and in particular the development of the Points of Single Contact (PSCs).

This report gives an overview of the progress made and remaining challenges since the last stocktaking one year ago, presented by BUSINESSEUROPE’s in its January 2011 brochure (Unleashing cross-border services). It also provides 10 concrete recommendations from European businesses to improve PSC performance.

Although the functionning of the PSCs has generally improved since last year, majority of companies for 11 European countries (out of 22) that have participated in the survey still consider that the PSCs are not yet truly making things easier.

According to the report, European companies particularly argues that “the PSC portals should provide more detailed information and offer the possibility to complete formalities entirely online, in multiple languages“. They also points out the impossibility to “use certain services from a PSC from another country due to a lack of interoperability of e-signatures or online identification, discouraging companies for making further use of a foreign PSC.“

Briefly, “National governments need to realise the great potential of improving their PSCs to attract foreign investment and cut costs by making better use of e-government tools.”

About SPOCS

SPOCS (Simple Procedures Online for Cross- Border Services) is a large-scale pilot project launched in May 2009. The SPOCS Pilot is related to the EU Service Directive (2006/123/EC) with regard to the provision of cross-border services in the Internal Market. This Directive required Member States to set up Points of Single Contact (PSC), through which service providers can obtain all relevant information and deal with all administrative formalities without the need to contact several authorities. The "points of single contact" have to be accessible at a distance and by electronic means.

About BUSINESSEUROPE

Founded in 1958, BUSINESSEUROPE represents small, medium and large companies through its members, 41 leading national business organisations in 35 European countries working together to achieve growth and competitiveness in Europe. It plays a crucial role in Europe as the main horizontal business organisation at EU level.

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