This paper aims to identify remaining barriers to the four freedoms, and determine what needs to be done to exploit the potential of the SM to promote growth and adjustment in the European economy. Alternative explanations for the deficiencies in the functioning of the SM are explored: (i) implementation problems of existing directives; (ii) SM policies that are not fully operational; (iii) remaining barriers to cross-border trade and investment; and (iv) obstacles to the free flow of knowledge and technology. This paper assesses the impact of SM policies on innovation, competitiveness and market integration. The EU should move from a legalistic approach to SM policies, which aims at the removal of cross-border barriers, to a more economics-based approach, centred on market monitoring.
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