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Across the EU, services are the cornerstone of the modern economy, accounting for over 70% of national GDPs and over 90% of new jobs created.
Fostering trade in services has, accordingly, become central to the EU's vision for developing the internal market. Yet regulating services and their international trade is notoriously complex, and controversial. For years the EU's efforts were limited to sector-specific regulation in key areas, until the adoption of the general Services Directive in 2006. Since then, confronted by the limited success of traditional legal intervention, the EU's attentions have shifted to alternative forms of regulation.
This book looks back on the historical development of services law, discusses the nature of impediments to trade in services in the EU, and explains the basic rules and principles applicable to such trade.
It also examines the recent development of alternative regulatory methods, such as networking, the use of common standards, private regulation, self-regulation, open methods of coordination, and administrative cooperation.
Taking a broad perspective and placing services regulation within its economic context, the author offers a thorough evaluation of current regulatory methods alongside the alternative methods which could be deployed. The book is the first to provide an overview of the regulation of services in the EU.