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2.3 The Single Market

Academic Research paper and Study of the Economy of Romania and Romanian Business

The beginning of the Single Market lies in the 1980s.[1] As the European Community had been a Custom Union since 1968 (cf. Weindl & Woyke 1999: 99) the next objective was the removal of non-tariff barriers to trade. Thus, allowing the desired economics of scale, efficiency gains through increased competition, stimulating innovation and creating a wider choice at lower prices for consumers (cf. EC 2007 e: 6).


The removal was intended to be realized until 1st January 1993 (cf. ibid: 18) when the Single Market came into force (cf. EC 2007 b). The European Monetary Union (EMU) was to be achieved in a second step by 1999, respectively in 2002 concerning the adoption of the Euro (cf. EC 2007 e: 20).

The Single European Market

The following chapter will give you a short outline of the main features of the Single European Market (sometimes: Inner Market, Single Market, European Market), its history and an empirical assessment about its functioning so far. The chapter afterwards will deal with the integration of the CEECs (Central and Eastern European Countries) into the Single Market of the EU.


[1] According to Robson (2000: 92) and Hitiris (2003: 49) already the Rome Treaty was meant to achieve the four freedoms (cf. chapter 2.3.1). However, in the 1980s trade and investment were still hampered by many barriers. The EEC was sometimes even caricaturized by the term of the “uncommon market” (Robson: 92). Moreover, the European economy performed low in several crucial economic sectors. The Single European Act (SEA) was the first treaty which actually gave an unambiguous definition of the SEM (cf. Pelkmans 2001: 37).