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European Union as a single market
Impact of factors on European union.
Corporate social responsibility.
International business embrace opportunities and challenges with them. As the global market place is getting connected, the risk involved in doing business could not be taken lightly. Some of the biggest challenges for international businesses are international accounting, foreign laws and regulations, political risk, labour exploitation, universal payment methods, world environmental laws, changing currency rates, cultural differences and so on. Jean Pierre Raffrain quoted in a speech that there have been major disagreements within the European Union. This quote emphasis on finding the reason behind separation in thoughts, culture, nationality and corporate social practices and economies of different states of the union. European Union is one common market for carrying out trade activities in the international market for different countries which is part of the union (Pradhan, Arvin, Nair & Bennett, 2017). Despite forming a union, the business of the countries varies due to different packaging style preferred by different consumers. This restricts the countries of the union to sell the same product in different territories.
The main idea of the essay is to find out why despite being considered the European market as a single market, there is a need to approach each of the markets differently. It is thus stated that the European single market is a collection of different market. The essay is going to carry forward the same idea and conduct an analysis in the essay to find out these differences through different factors which are important for conducting trade in any international business (Bruszt & Vukov, 2017). The essay is limited to the European Union and does not discuss the international trade between other countries. The easy will cover benefits of having a single market for carrying out a trade which made the European countries to form a union and also some areas where the states separate themselves from following the regulations and policies of the union as they have their nationality and culture which they need to protect for the future generations.
European Union is the second-largest economy in the world after the United States constituting 22 per cent of the global economy with an estimate of $18.8 trillion in 2018. Presently the union has 27 states as its members. This union was formed with a motive to be the single market in the world and bring opportunities for different states to sell their goods and services to the other neighbouring countries. The single market reduced major trade bloc on different types of products. It allowed the companies to freely conduct business in the market (Socoliuc, Grosu, Hlaciuc & Stanciu, 2018). The union removed some common policies such as product regulation and freedom of factors of production. The main objective of the single market was the movement of labour, goods and services from one place to another within the market easily. The trade union removed major fiscal, political and technical trade barriers for the companies and tried to not to obstruct the movement. The best part of this union was that the citizens can study, shop or live in any part of these states as per their choices. Customers of the single market enjoy a wide range of products from different companies of the different states. It is due to these reasons European union is considered as frontier free (Blind, Mangelsdorf, Niebel & Ramel, 2018). However, despite these benefits, the union faces a lot of challenges which restrict companies to stop conducting business in the European market. These include national income, tax, differences in the duties and services and different demand of the e-commerce business, different national administrative procedures, different rules and regulations for safety and so on. It is also observed that each state has a separate market for different fields such as finance, energy and transport system. There are similar unions in the world such as the Gulf corporation council, CAROM and so on. These are an example of a single market just like the European Union. However, the objective of these unions differs from one another. European Union states that it wants to complete the single market. It means that it wants to completely remove all kinds of the tariff, non-tariff, technical, political and economical barriers. It aims to completely integrate all the economies into a single one which will have a single set of the economic rules followed by the company (Quaglia, Howarth & Liebe, 2016). However, this is the main cause of disagreement. The states of the European Union are not willing to have a single set of economic rules. They want to have separate things however they do not want to even get separated from the union as it brings immense opportunities for the companies to sell the product in a large consumer base. It also provides employment opportunities to those who are unable to find a good job for themselves in their native state. It will also increase competition for the companies in the market pressuring them to innovate something new for customers.
The best part of the European Union is that it promotes corporate social responsibility. The union support the companies to understand their positive and negative impact on the society and therefore make them mitigate all the negative impacts that they had caused to the environment. It also supports the company to make certain changes in the company’s supply chain. European union ask the companies to follow and implement CRS polices for making companies more sustainable and innovative (Amelio, 2017). It does this as its social responsibility towards the world environment. The European Union renewed its policy in 2011 which focuses on enhancing the visibility of CSR, disseminating good practices with the integration of CSR practices in education, research and training of the people. However, it has been observed that different states have different practices for Corporate social responsibility and they do not want to compromise in their policies as each of the state has a different perspective. Some of them do not pay much attention to CRS activities will other so and this creates disagreements between the states.
One of the biggest issue with the European Union is that it does not have the power of coercion which can help in threatening the state to agree to the single set of policies. It is because the union does not have special forces neither they have police to provide security. Each state of the union has its power (Jensen & Snaith, 2016). This indicates that the European Union rely on its members for enforcing regulations and policies made by it. This also states that the European Union is decentralized. It means that instead of having all the powers in the hands, its power is spread to the individual states. There is no democratic system which can help in defining the new rules and regulations together. Citizens of the European Union try to put their demands with the help of political parties.
Cultural distance reflects the difference in the opinions, norms and beliefs of the states. It is said that trade reduces the cultural difference between the states. However, there are 27 countries each having their own culture and own tradition (Kurtulan, 2017). They have their language preference which makes it difficult for the company of another state to follow the same culture. Moreover, it has been also identified from the fact that it’s the change n culture which even changes the perception for a particular product in the minds of the consumer. For some that particular product may be useful while for others it may not.
According to the world bank, European union gross domestic product in 2019 was $15.6 trillion which was $5.8 trillion less than the United States. The union has struggled from high debts in 2008 and this indicates that the union's disputes and clashes resulted in depts. And thus in 2016, the UK decided to leave the European group and run a separate company far from the continuous clashes which are decreasing the economic status of the individual states (Pollitt, 2019). This proves that each state faces disagreements and thus the single market of the union is stated to be different from one another.
It can be concluded from the findings that the European Union is a single market but each of its states has its market which needs to be approached differently. It is because the European Union is formed of different states which have their own rules regulations. These states do not favour having a common political or economic law for governing and trading in the market. It creates disputes between the states and thus they disagree with one another. It is due to these reasons each one has its own market with its own rules. They are united under European union to conduct trade although they have been separated from the union in policies and regulations. It is due to this reason any company that wants to sell the product in the European Union has to follow different rules and regulations such as for the safety and packaging material the states have different rules and the company if want to sell product need to package the item differently. Similarly, the company also have different rules for CSR as per their culture and economy.
Amelio, S. (2017). CSR and Social Entrepreneurship: The Role of the European Union. Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy, 5(3), 335-354.
Blind, K., Mangelsdorf, A., Niebel, C., & Ramel, F. (2018). Standards in the global value chains of the European Single Market. Review of International Political Economy, 25(1), 28-48.
Bruszt, L., & Vukov, V. (2017). Making states for the single market: European integration and the reshaping of economic states in the Southern and Eastern peripheries of Europe. West European Politics, 40(4), 663-687.
Jensen, M. D., & Snaith, H. (2016). When politics prevails: the political economy of a Brexit. Journal of European Public Policy, 23(9), 1302-1310.
Kurtulan, G. (2017). Minority shareholder protection in cross-border mergers: a must for or an impediment to the European single market?. European Business Organization Law Review, 18(1), 101-121.
Pollitt, M. G. (2019). The European single market in electricity: an economic assessment. Review of Industrial Organization, 55(1), 63-87.
Pradhan, R. P., Arvin, M. B., Nair, M., & Bennett, S. E. (2017). Venture capital investment, financial development, and economic growth: the case of European single market countries. Venture Capital, 19(4), 313-333.
Quaglia, L., Howarth, D., & Liebe, M. (2016). The political economy of European capital markets union. J. Common Mkt. Stud., 54, 185.
Socoliuc, M., Grosu, V., Hlaciuc, E., & Stanciu, S. (2018). Analysis of social responsibility and reporting methods of Romanian companies in the countries of the European Union. Sustainability, 10(12), 4662.
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