A single market requires political union

Don Cruickshank

From the Financial Times, 22 January 2003

By Don Cruickshank, chairman of the London Stock Exchange

Therefore the current process of national bargaining over EU laws is unlikely to produce a well functioning market in financial services. When it comes to market liberalisation, we need institutions that can act on the interests of Europe as a whole. And we need constitutional arrangements that give those institutions democratic legitimacy.

The European Commission and Euro­pean parliament need to become more political and less susceptible to national interference. That requires a democratic mandate for the Commis­sion president and for those commissioners directly involved in market liberalisation. That would enhance the Commission’s legitimacy and its political authority over its own bureaucracy and the member states. It would then have the power to tackle national protectionism – the key to improving Europe’s overall economic performance.

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