First of all, I would like to thank to the rapporteur and my shadow rapporteur colleagues for the constructive negotiations.
I believe that we achieved a correct balance between economic freedoms, social rights and the interests of consumers, workers and businesses as well as the general interest, instead of focusing only on the economic benefits that the Single Market can grant.
We have a text that remains focused on the IMCO competences and always make a clear difference between justified and unjustified barriers.
We find it also crucial that we clarify what gold-plating means and that the report correctly distinguishes it from setting of higher standards that go beyond EU-wide minimum standards for environmental and consumer protection, as well as healthcare and food safety.
It is also extremely important for us – as well as clearly stated in the text – that Member States’ keep their right to regulate and the pursuit of legitimate public policy objectives such as protection of the environment and consumer or employment rights.
We also call on the Commission to propose ways to remove unjustified geo-blocking, and we made sure to have a clear reference on Territorial Supply Constraints that are clearly hampering the development of the single market and its potential benefit to consumers.
I must also highlight that for S&D it will always remain a key issue that economic freedom cannot be put on an equal footing with fundamental rights.
In this report, we also clearly stand against state-sponsored discrimination that can establish a non-tariff barrier such as happened at the case of the Hungarian Law on LGBTIQ-phobia.
I guess we all agree that we already voted for a progressive text at IMCO level, but we also believe in the special protection of the public services especially based on their general interest role and this is why we intend to include this in the report by supporting AM2.
We are convinced that this report will also serves us to strengthen the Single Market. S&D Group intends to support the report.
Thank you for your attention.