Capital markets union

The capital markets union will strengthen the European economy and promote capital market financing to complement bank-based loans. It is intended to deepen and expand the EU’s single market with regard to capital and financial services.

The capital markets union represents a central pillar of future growth and employment prospects in the EU.
Olaf Scholz, German Finance Minister

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Capital markets union
Capital markets union

Advancing the capital markets union has the aim of improving access to finance on the capital markets and making it easier for SMEs to borrow money. Additional goals are to promote economic growth, create jobs, and make sure the EU remains an attractive place to invest.

Opportunities for businesses, investors and the environment

The free movement of capital is one of the four fundamental freedoms underpinning the EU’s single market. The capital markets union aims to remove existing barriers to the free movement of capital in the Union and to give companies easier access to financing on the capital markets. Facilitating capital market access is a key cross-cutting issue in the European Union’s financial market policy.

Advancing the capital markets union is central to the competitiveness of Europe’s financial sector and the real economy in Europe. In Europe, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in particular often struggle to access funding, even though they are the ones who most need a broad range of cheap and flexible sources of financing to be able to establish themselves on the market and become internationally competitive.

Moreover, Europe’s capital markets are highly fragmented. Financing conditions vary significantly among EU member states. As a result, investors rarely buy shares or corporate bonds across international borders. This drives up financing costs and restricts the options open to investors. By advancing the capital markets union, we want to achieve improvements in these areas.

Specifically, the focus will be on supporting economic recovery in a meaningful way, taking into account the interests of investors, consumers and businesses. This will accelerate the post-crisis recovery and promote growth.

Key preliminary work for the advancement of the capital markets union was carried out by the Next CMU High-Level Group, which was set up by France, the Netherlands and Germany, and the High-Level Forum on capital markets union.

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