FIW Policy Briefs | 2023-01

FIW-Policy Brief No. 57 “EU’s Single Market at 30′

  • Authors: F. Breuss
© Alexey Larionov @

In the recently published FIW Policy Brief No. 57, Fritz Breuss (WIFO, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration) takes stock of the effects of the European Single Market
and points out the challenges for economic policy to safeguard and further develop the European fundamental freedoms.

With the establishment of the Single Market in 1993, the EU created the centerpiece of European Integration. The Economic and Monetary union (EMU) with the introduction of the Euro should complete the economic integration. The anniversary of 30 years of EU’s SM offers the opportunity to evaluate what has been achieved and what still needs to be accomplished. With the SMP the EU started with a noble goal to create a free market comparable to that of the USA. Over the last decade, however, a series of crises have prevented the goals from being achieved: the global financial crisis 2008, the Great Recession 2009, followed by the Euro crisis in 2010. Ten years later, the COVID-19 crisis 2020/21 shocked Europe, followed by the energy crisis (connected with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine) in 2022. The last two crises have even led to deviating from the path of the free-market economy and to embark – via emergency measures – into a controlled market economy, if not into a semi-planned economy. Nevertheless, overall, the creation of EU’s SM had increased prosperity via an intensification of intra-EU trade.

Fritz Breuss (WIFO, Vienna University of Economics and Business)
EU’s Single Market at 30
FIW-Policy Brief Nr. 57
January 2023

The Policy Brief was presented at the 48th FIW Lecture on January 26, 2023.