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Constructing a European MarketStandards, Regulation, and Governance$
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Michelle Egan

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199244058

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199244057.001.0001

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Harmonization: The Slow Strategy Forward

Harmonization: The Slow Strategy Forward

Chapter:
(p.61) 4 Harmonization: The Slow Strategy Forward
Source:
Constructing a European Market
Author(s):

Michelle P. Egan (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199244057.003.0004

Focuses on early efforts in the 1960s and 1970s by the European Community to address trade barriers through the harmonization of national regulatory policies and practices. The push for harmonization of national policies in Europe was driven by the understanding that, without regulatory intervention at the regional level, there would be no single market and that trade conflicts would escalate. This chapter illustrates the tremendous difficulties that this (old approach) policy of harmonization encountered, despite a strong legal basis in the treaty to eliminate disparities in national regulatory systems. Since this policy reflected a regulatory mismatch, as the instruments chosen were ill‐suited to dealing with the problem, the chapter concludes by focusing on how political and economic constraints forced the EU to undertake regulatory reform to achieve a better match between its policy objective and outcomes.

Keywords:   European Union, harmonization, regulation, regulatory mismatch, regulatory reform, single market, trade barriers, trade conflict

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