- Liberalisation versus national protectionism: the European liberalised postal market: finalisation by whom?
- Competition and Regulation in Network Industries
- Volume | Issue number
- 11 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR)
The new European Postal Directive of 2008 provides the postal market with new opportunities as it allows for the gradual development of competition of services of general interests in Europe. However, the directive leaves room for uncertainties and the full opening of the postal market is hampered by a number of existing and emerging barriers. Thus the European Commission is handling complaints about state aid which is granted to national postal services in order to facilitate their role as service of national interest. Much harder to challenge are a number of "de facto barriers" which fall outside competition law. Currently, the infringement procedure is the aggressive weapon against Member States contravening the Treaty. However, this procedure does not offer an overall solution to remove all trade barriers especially the "de facto barriers". In contrast, the Open Method of Co-ordination could be used to set policy and norms for the postal market. These could serve as best practices to manage the postal market by objectives rather than through enforceable laws.
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