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SLIM: New method to simplify single market legislation

Reporting on the first phase of the SLIM (Simpler Legislation for the Internal Market) project, the European Commission described the exercise as a positive one but stressed that the success of the operation will depend on the willingness of the Council to review current legis...
Reporting on the first phase of the SLIM (Simpler Legislation for the Internal Market) project, the European Commission described the exercise as a positive one but stressed that the success of the operation will depend on the willingness of the Council to review current legislation.

The SLIM project was proposed by the Commission, on 8 May 1996, following growing calls from firms and industry for legislation that was effective but did not impose unnecessary constraints. The project was also endorsed by the Council in its Resolution of 8 July on legislative and administrative simplification in the field of the Internal Market.

The SLIM project, is based on a new working method in which small teams of experts in the fields concerned scrutinize current legislation and draw up options for simplification. The project brought together experts from national administrations, users of the legislation and the European Commission in an attempt to identify specific measures for simplifying legislation in four specific areas:

- The Intrastat system of statistics for intra-Community trade
- Construction products;
- The recognition of diplomas;
- Ornamental plants.

Emphasizing that overregulation at national level is a major obstacle to the completion of the Single Market, the Commission calls on Member States to commit themselves fully to the task of simplifying legislation.

Speaking on behalf of the Commission, Mr. Mario Monti, Commissioner responsible for the Internal Market, noted that: "The work we have undertaken as part of the SLIM project is encouraging. The results of the first phase have been fruitful, confirm the validity of the method used and could well justify extending the project to other areas. For its part, the Commission will vigorously pursue the aim of simplifying and improving legislation, but invites the Council to commit itself fully to the same task".
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