Open & Fair Economy – How business can deliver responsible growth in a globalised environment.
The task force seeks to engage with policy makers and stakeholders on the challenges facing an open and fair economy policy, essential to set the right conditions for job creation, growth and investment. The task force will be a forum for a constructive dialogue on key issues facing the EU and impacting Member States, encompassing taxation, corporate governance and the regulation of financial markets, and policies relating to investments, trade, competition, public procurement and intellectual property right.
• Smart taxation: supporting policy makers in making our tax systems simpler, clearer, predictable and enforceable, providing stability in times of economic downturn or crisis. The tax certainty has a great impact on business decisions, in absence of which, modified business structures, increased costs, and changes to investment decisions could arise. Smart taxations systems effectively help economic players to be compliant and allows Member States a certain degree of flexibility in implementation at the national level. Antitrust – refitting and updating the antitrust framework through soft and hard law measures. The horizontal and vertical reviews, antitrust and digital markets, innovation, common-ownership, "killer" acquisitions and merger review. And unfinished business from the last administration: Intel, pay-for-delay and the Google appeals.
• The digital economy: the review of DSM legislation, the national and supra-national proposals for digital service tax, the debate on privacy, copyright and whether there is a need to regulate further.
• Industrial policy, foreign investment: implementation of foreign investment review, the interface between industrial policy, competition and trade protection measures.
• The Green Deal: bringing together green tech, finance and sustainability. How will Europe shape its ambitious green agenda?
• Financial Services: As the Commission pursues its goal of building “an economy that works for the people”, we will examine the new role financial services play in a Europe facing increasing geopolitical, technological and socio-economic challenges. Key will be how the market adapts to a global standard-setter that respects “European specificities”, a capital market infrastructure that enhances economic sovereignty and competitiveness, a regulatory balance between innovation, investor protection and financial stability, and a “greener” investment environment to facilitate climate neutrality.
• Trade: The European Union’s trade agenda for the coming five years will have to cope with a wide range of important topics: a) how to safeguard the multilateral rules-based trading system and navigating geo-strategically between conflicts with the United States and with the new competing trading powerhouse of China; b) how to work with like-minded countries moving forward new plurilateral WTO deals and WTO reform as well as settling pending and new bilateral negotiations, including a “21st century” trade agenda promoting services and digital trade; c) how to address best the many “non-trade issues” related to trade and which are of increasing public concern: human rights, modern slavery, environmental protection and climate change as well as creating awareness about benefits of trade agreements and ensuring their proper implementation and enforcement.
• Innovation agenda: Traditionally within DG RTD, innovation will now move to Innovation and Youth under Commissioner Gabriel and to Internal Market under Commissioner Goulard, both supervised by Vice-President Vestager. How this will all work out is yet to be defined but the idea is that it will warrant a more de-siloed approach to innovation. On the agenda: Horizon Europe programme, a comprehensive Long-term strategy for Europe’s industrial future as well as its new Strategic Innovation Agenda for 2021-2027
Co-Chairs: Carmen Bell, Portland Communications and Willem Vriessendorp, #SustainablePublicAffairs