In an article in the Financial Times, Ernest-Antoine Seilliere (president of Unice, the pan-European business association) accuses European governments of being indifferent and is urging governments to find a rapid solution to the institutional crisis.

Seilliere calls on the European governments to solve these three issues:

First, complete the internal market including services. This will not happen until the myth of the “Polish plumber” – the idea that cheaper workers from Eastern Europe will increasingly take jobs in the west – and other misconceptions have been dispelled. Second, review existing legislation and actions to create better law-making. Regulatory impact assessments must examine the effects on competitiveness. The efficiency of the institutions must not be measured by the number of pages of rules – less is more. Jose Manuel Barroso, European Commission president, knows we will back him on his very attractive plan to scrap absurd EU laws. He has already received some proposals from business. Third, as governments have not yet agreed the EU’s financial resources for 2007-13, give priority to programmes that make the Union more innovative.

As a pro-integrationist I agree with his points: ongoing economic integration, simplification of European regulations and an improvement of European’s business climate will improve the institutional infrastructure of the EU and the competitiveness of its nations.

Great! But the points that Seillere addresses have all been used over and over again in the pro-Europe campaigns in the EU countries that have had a referendum on the European constitution. So who is he addressing in this article? Clearly he is addressing the governments of the EU member states. Does this mean that he’s asking them to bypass the votes that have been cast in countries like France and the Netherlands?

Maybe a 4th issue has to be added: improve the democratic deficit of the EU.

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