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Single Market Scoreboard


Reporting period:

12/2021 – 12/2022

This report takes into account all transposition notifications made by 10 December 2022 for directives with a transposition deadline on or before 30 November 2022. As of that date, 1018 directives and 6224 regulations were in force to ensure the functioning of the single market. All comparisons are with the figures for 10 December 2021, the previous reporting date.

Single market legislation can only achieve its intended effects if the provisions in the relevant directives are completely and correctly implemented in Member States’ national laws by the deadline set out in these directives.

Monitoring transposition helps make the single market work by ensuring that single market rules are implemented properly in Member States.

Such monitoring shows the transposition deficit (the gap between the number of single market directives adopted by the EU and the number of directives transposed by each Member State) and the conformity deficit (the percentage of those directives incorrectly transposed). It highlights what Member States are doing to ensure that single market law is implemented correctly and, by doing so, encourages them to improve their performance.

Transposition and the single market – why does it matter?

Incorrect transposition, implementation and application of EU rules creates barriers to the smooth functioning of the single market. Delays or gaps in transposition deprive people and businesses of the benefits stemming from the agreed rules, sometimes even for years.

The December 2016 Communication on EU law: Better results through better application pointed to the need to strengthen compliance assessment (the effective assessment of the completeness and conformity of national measures implementing EU law). For cases brought to the Court of Justice under Article 260(3) on the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), the Commission now systematically asks the Court to impose both a lump sum and a periodic penalty payment on Member States that do not communicate their transposition measures. This approach is in line with other infringement cases that can result in financial sanctions. It clearly demonstrates the Commission’s determination to ensure fast transposition.

In its judgment of 8 July 2019 in Case C-543/17, Commission v Belgium, the Court of Justice clarified the scope of Article 260(3) TFEU by stating that its sanction mechanism may also be applied in cases involving partial failure to adopt and to communicate transposition measures. In this context, the Court refers to Member States’ obligation not only to notify transposition measures but also to supply sufficiently clear and precise information as to which provisions in national law transpose which provisions of a directive. On 16 July 2020, the Court of Justice confirmed its position in rulings C-549/18, Commission v Romania, and C-550/18, Commission v Ireland. On the application of the sanctions, the Court clarified that the infringement is deemed to start from the transposition deadline for the Directive.

It is up to each Member State to implement EU directives in an accurate and timely way. The March 2020 Long-term action plan for better implementation and enforcement of single market rules (the “enforcement action plan) highlights that the single market is built on EU law and is at the heart of the European project. It has fuelled economic growth and has made life easier for European consumers and businesses. However, timely and correct transposition of single market rules remains a challenge.

To support Member States more effectively in transposing directives and prevent new barriers to the single market, the Commission (in its Better Regulation Guidelines of November 2021) proposed implementation strategies to assist Member States and to monitor the transposition of new directives. These strategies identify the challenges that Member States face during the implementation process and explain what support the Commission can provide to Member States. Support measures include preparing guidance documents, organising expert groups and workshops, creating dedicated websites, and promoting training for practitioners.

In October 2022, the Commission adopted the Communication Enforcing EU law for a Europe that delivers setting out its work to ensure that EU law is complied with, and people and businesses can benefit from the same rights across the EU. The Communication is structured around 6 major themes, that can all play a role in improving timely and correct transposition: (1) increased cooperation with Member States and specialised authorities; (2) increased transparency and monitoring; (3) technical assistance and financial support available from the Commission; (4) possible use of pre-infringement process for swifter compliance; (5) use of infringement procedures primarily to tackle breaches with the biggest impact on the interests of people and businesses and (6) adaptability in response to crises.

Key messages

  • On transposing single market directives (all indicators combined), 10 Member States (Denmark, Estonia, Greece, France, Italy, Cyprus, Lithuania, Malta, Portugal and Slovenia) performed above the EU average and 9 Member States were around the EU average. 8 Member States were below the EU average: Bulgaria, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Croatia, Hungary, the Netherlands and Poland. After 2 challenging years, the national authorities of these 8 countries must refocus their attention and devote sufficient resources to implementing the single market body of law.
  • The average transposition deficit decreased to 1.1% (-31%), while the average conformity deficit remained stable, at 1.3%. The average transposition delay increased by 47% to 12.6 months (it was 8.6 months in 2021).
  • Further efforts are needed to reduce the number of EU directives that are transposed by Member States incorrectly or with delays. Uniform implementation of EU law is fundamental to the single market. The third Annual Single Market Report published in January 2023 points out that late transposition creates an uneven playing field and prevents people and businesses in the Member States from benefiting from a more integrated single market. It highlights that much could be gained if Member States increased efforts early in the transposition process (for further information on the third Annual Single Market Report, see “More information).

Overall performance


A Member State’s performance across all transposition indicators is calculated by scoring each of the 5 indicators listed in the Performance indicators table below as follows:     
RED = -1, YELLOW = 0 and GREEN = +1.

The colours on the map represent the sum of these scores:

  • green: 2 or higher = above average
  • yellow: -1, 0 or 1 = average
  • red: -2 or lower = below average

Performance indicators

[1] Transposition deficit (% of all directives not transposed)
→ Target established by the European Council, Brussels 8-9 March 2007
≤ 1%/> 1%
[2] Change over the last 12 months (change in the number of non-transposed directives)decreaseno changeincrease
[3] Long-overdue directives (2 years or more)
→ Target established by the European Council, Barcelona 15-16 March 2002
0/> 0
[4] Total transposition delay (in months) for overdue directives &
[5] Conformity deficit (% of all directives transposed incorrectly)
< averageaverage ±10%> average

This table combines the most relevant indicators to provide a better overview of Member States’ compliance in transposing the single market directives. The table shows that about a third of Member States (10) performed better than the EU average when all indicators are taken into account (Denmark, Estonia, Greece, France, Italy, Cyprus, Lithuania, Malta, Portugal and Slovenia). That is twice as many as last year.

Indicator [1]: Transposition deficit

The transposition deficit is the percentage of single market directives not yet completely notified to the Commission out of the total number of directives that should have been notified by the deadline. A 1% target was set at the March 2007 European Council.

How is the transposition deficit calculated?

In its calculation of each Member State’s transposition deficit, the Commission includes:

  • directives for which no transposition measures have been communicated
  • directives considered as partially transposed by the Member State, after notification of some transposition measures
  • directives the Member State considers completely transposed, but for which the Commission has launched an infringement proceeding for non-communication and the Member State has not notified new transposition measures after the latest procedural step taken by the Commission.

The transposition deficit does not include directives that are considered completely transposed by a Member State but for which transposition measures are still under examination by the Commission (no procedural step since the latest notification) – see “Directives under completeness check” in “Facts and Figures”.

Transposition deficit of Member States as of 10 December 2022

After 2 difficult years, the average EU transposition deficit is now going in the right direction again and is very close to the 1% threshold (see also the “Changes in the average transposition deficit” graph under “Trends” below).

15 Member States are now in line with the 1% target (up from 5 a year ago).

Indicator [2]: Change over the last 12 months

Change in the number of outstanding directives since December 2021

Most of the Member States reversed the negative trend of the previous 2 years.

Indicator [3]: Long-overdue directives (2 years or more)

Directives with transposition deadlines before 1 December 2020, which have not been fully notified to the Commission by at least one Member State as of 10 December 2022

NumberTitleNot fully transposed byTransposition date
2013/59/EURBasic safety standards for protection against the dangers arising from exposure to ionising radiationLatvia, Spain06/02/2018
(EU) 2018/1581Amendment of Directive 2009/119/EC as regards the methods for calculating stockholding obligationsSpain19/10/2019
2019/68/EUTechnical specifications for the marking of firearms and their essential componentsBulgaria, Sweden17/01/2020
2019/69/EUTechnical specifications for alarm and signal weaponsBulgaria, Netherlands17/01/2020
2019/692/EUAmendment of Directive 2009/73/EC concerning common rules for the internal market in natural gasIreland24/02/2020
2018/844/EUAmendment of Directives 2010/31/EU on the energy performance of buildings and 2012/27/EU on energy efficiencyBulgaria, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg10/03/2020
2018/645/EUAmendment of Directives 2003/59/EC on the initial qualification and periodic training of drivers of certain road vehicles for the carriage of goods or passengers and 2006/126/EC on driving licencesRomania23/05/2020
2018/849/EUAmendment of Directives 2000/53/EC on end-of-life vehicles, 2006/66/EC on batteries and accumulators and waste batteries and accumulators, and 2012/19/EU on waste electrical and electronic equipmentBelgium, Croatia05/07/2020
2018/850/EUAmendment of Directive 1999/31/EC on the landfill of wasteBelgium, Croatia05/07/2020
2018/851/EUAmendment of Directive 2008/98/EC on wasteBelgium05/07/2020
2018/852/EUAmendment of Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging wasteBelgium, Croatia, Spain05/07/2020
2018/1808/EUAmendment of Directive 2010/13/EU on audiovisual media services (Audiovisual Media Services Directive)Ireland19/09/2020
2018/2002/EUAmendment of Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiencyAustria, Belgium, Croatia, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Spain25/10/2020

More directives and more Member States are concerned compared to last year. 14 Member States have long-overdue directives (up from 12) and 13 long-overdue directives have not been fully notified (up from 11).

Indicator [4]: Total transposition delays

The spark lines in the chart shows the trend in transposition delays since December 2019. Bar gives the value in December 2022. The EU-27 average is 12.6 months.

Transposition delays have increased in most Member States. Outstanding directives are now 12.6 months late on average (up from 8.6 months a year ago).

Indicator [5]: Conformity deficit (incorrectly transposed directives)

The conformity deficit measures the number of transposed directives for which the Commission has launched infringement proceedings for incorrect transposition. It is expressed as a percentage of the number of single market directives notified to the Commission as “transposed or “not requiring any further implementation measures. Only the Court of Justice can rule definitively that a directive has not been transposed correctly, and the Commission is still working on the conformity assessment of a number of notified national measures. This should be kept in mind when interpreting the conformity deficit statistics.

Conformity deficit of Member States as of 10 December 2022

The average conformity deficit (1.3%) has remained stable.

EEA EFTA countries

Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway are also subject to single market rules under the EEA Agreement. They are monitored by the EFTA Surveillance Authority.

However, there is a time lag between the adoption or repeal of a legal act in the EU and its addition to or removal from the EEA Agreement. This means that the body of EU law that applies in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway may differ from that which is in force in the EU. On 1 December 2022, 783 directives and 3875 regulations were in force to ensure the functioning of the single market in the EEA. This should be considered when comparing the Single Market Scoreboard with the EEA Scoreboard.

Transposition deficit

Transposition deficit in EEA EFTA countries as of 1 December 2022

Average deficit (all 3 countries): 1% (up from 0.9% in December 2021)

  • Norway: 1.5% (up from 0.8%)
  • Iceland: 1% (down from 1.6%)
  • Liechtenstein: 0.4% (no change)

Total number of late directives: 23 (up from 21 in December 2021)

  • Norway: 12 (up from 6)
  • Iceland: 8 (down from 12)
  • Liechtenstein: 3 (no change)

Average delay in transposing directives: 13.1 months (down from 17.2 months in December 2021)

  • Norway: 11.2 months (up from 9.9)
  • Iceland: 10.1 months (down from 15.6)
  • Liechtenstein: 18 months (down from 26)

Trends (in the EU)

Changes in the average transposition deficit

The transposition deficit is the percentage of single market directives not yet completely notified to the Commission out of the total number of directives that should have been notified by the deadline. A 1% target was set at the March 2007 European Council.

  • The EU average deficit, which had been overall decreasing steadily for 19 years (between 1997 and 2016), doubled in June 2016 (from 0.7% to 1.5%). This rise was due to an unusually high number of directives that needed to be transposed in the months before the cut-off date for calculating Member States’ performance. The transposition rate then returned to more normal values (0.6% in December 2019). In 2020 and 2021, it increased again, by 167%. This was mainly caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which placed a strain on Member States’ administrative resources. After these 2 difficult years, the Member States managed to break the significant upward trend, reducing the transposition deficit by 30%, from 1.6 to 1.1%, very close to the 1% target.

Trend in transposition deficit by Member State and EEA EFTA country


Changes in the incompleteness rate

The incompleteness rate records, across the EU, the number of outstanding directives that one or more Member States have failed to transpose completely as a percentage of the total number of single market directives. It shows the extent to which the single market is not yet a reality in the areas covered under those directives.

  • The single market is incomplete when its rules are not applied, or the rights derived from them cannot be exercised uniformly. When one or more Member States fail to transpose directives on time, they leave a void in the EU legal framework. Instead of the single market covering all Member States, it remains much smaller and fragmented. Consequently, the economic interests of all Member States suffer if just one Member State does not deliver.
  • Over the past 10 years, the incompleteness rate has been fairly stable (4 or 5%). The exception is 2016 when the rate rose to 7% due to a big package of 66 directives that had to be transposed. From March 2020 and for 2 years, the COVID-19 pandemic forced Member State authorities to address pressing priorities. At the same time, there was a quite large number of single market directives (96) that had to be transposed between 1 December 2019 and 1 December 2021. As a result, the rate grew again to 6% and has not fallen yet.
  • In absolute terms, 60 out of 1018 single market directives due on 30 November 2022 have not been transposed in at least one Member State (they were 63 out of 997 directives in 2021). As last year, this 6% incompleteness rate means that the single market’s legal framework is operating only at 94% of its potential. In short, on the eve of its 30th anniversary, the single market is still not a reality for the sectors concerned.
Main problem areas (and corresponding incompleteness rate)
  • Energy (including energy efficiency): 6 out of 17 (35%)
  • Special freedom of movement arrangements (weapons, explosives, defence-related products, pyrotechnic articles and cultural goods): 4 directives incompletely transposed out of 12 in force (33%)
  • Connectivity/media/digital society: 5 out of 20 (25%)

Facts and figures

Focus on “short-overdue directives

The European Council set a “zero tolerance target in 2002 for delays of 2 years or more in transposing directives. One purpose of the Scoreboard is therefore to report on the number of long-overdue directives in each Member State. However, successive Scoreboards reveal that Member States may have difficulties in transposing directives by the agreed deadlines (time between the entry into force of the directive and the date agreed for notifying national transposition measures to the Commission). The average delay is usually between 6 and 12 months. It is even longer this year, at 12.6 months.

  • In 2016 (1 November 2015 to 30 November 2016), Member States had to transpose 66 new single market directives. This was significantly more than in 2015 (47), 2017 (39), 2018 (38), 2019 (35), 2020 (51), 2021 (45) and 2022 (48). Many of them have a transposition deadline close to the cut-off date for calculating the transposition deficit. Consequently, the transposition deficit more than doubled, from 0.7% in December 2015 to 1.5% in December 2016 (back to its worst level since May 2007).
  • If we only consider the 29 directives with the most recent transposition deadlines (1 June to 30 November 2022), the transposition deficit is 12.7%. It is much lower than a year ago, when the transposition deficit for the recent directives was 35.8%. However, it is more than 10 times the average deficit for all directives (1.1%). The transposition rate varies by Member State, from 100% for Estonia and Romania which have transposed all 29 directives to 72% for Belgium and Spain (21 directives transposed). In addition to a high transposition deficit, these directives have an incompleteness rate of 45% as 13 of the 29 directives have not been transposed by at least one Member State (the incompleteness rate for all directives is 6%).
  • In most cases, short transposition deadlines do not account for the long delays, nor do administrative burdens or the complexity of the directives. If we look at the 48 directives due in this reporting period (1 December 2021 to 30 November 2022), there is an average transposition period of more than 2 years (27 months) for the 12 directives adopted by the European Parliament and the Council, and an average transposition period of 14 months for the 36 execution directives adopted by the Commission (or by the Council for taxation issues).
  • Most Member States need to better plan their transposition and notification processes for directives that have to be incorporated into national law. As the guardian of the Treaties, the Commission strives to launch infringement proceedings for non-communication of the expected national measures within 2 months after the transposition deadline. Too many of these infringement proceedings are being launched because of delays for logistical reasons unrelated to the complexity and/or sensitivity of the directives.
  • Based on information provided by Member States, timely transposition seems to be linked to four factors in particular: (i) political attention; (ii) careful planning; (iii) starting transposition work while negotiations are still ongoing; and (iv) close cooperation with national parliaments. Member States are therefore encouraged to proceed with the necessary steps as early as possible on these identified factors and to use tools provided by the Commission. In this context, the 2022 Communication Enforcing EU law for a Europe that delivers outlines the wide range of tools the Commission uses to support more efficient and effective implementation (e.g., IT tools, meeting-based tools, reporting tools, preventing tools, ad-hoc tools).


Directives undergoing completeness checks

Number of directives undergoing completeness check as of 10 December 2022 (560)


The Commission is currently examining a very large number of notifications of national measures transposing single market directives.


Overdue directives by sector and Member States

This table shows, for each Member State, the total number of directives not fully notified, broken down by sector, as on 10 December 2022. Sectors in which directives have been fully transposed are included under “Others”. The highlighted figures show the sector(s) with the highest number of overdue directives in each Member State (where relevant, 10% or more of the total number of overdue directives).

Member State
Competition (1)
Connectivity/media/digital society (20)
Consumers (19)
Energy incl. Energy
consumption (17)
Environment (185)
Financial information and
company law (20)
Financial services (64)
Free movement of
persons & Citizenship of Union (23)
Social Policy (96)
Special freedom of
movement arrangements (12)
Taxation (73)
Transport (118)
Others (370)
Spain1  422613 42 25
Belgium 1 261213  7 23
Poland 131211113  7 21
Bulgaria 3 3 2 112 6 18
Hungary 1 3   131 6 15
Luxembourg   4 2 13 14 15
Czechia12 2 1113  3 14
Netherlands 111 22111 4 14
Portugal 21 1   2 25 13
Ireland 2 31   3  3 12
Latvia 31241  1    12
Croatia   25   3  1 11
Austria   31 113  1 10
Germany   2   12  5 10
Slovenia1    2 13  3 10
Cyprus     2  3  4 9
Finland 2 21  11  2 9
Slovakia  32 1 11  1 9
Italy  11  21   2 7
Sweden 1 1  1 12 1 7
Denmark 1 1 1  1  1 5
Estonia1   1  1   1 4
Greece   2    2    4
Malta   1 11 1    4
France        3    3
Lithuania   1    1  1 3
Romania1      1   1 3

Problematic sectors for Member States (more than 25% of all cases)

  • Environment – Croatia (45%), Latvia (33%), Belgium (26%)
  • Transport – Germany (50%), Cyprus (44%), Hungary (40%), Portugal (38%), Bulgaria and Poland (33%), Belgium and Slovenia (30%), the Netherlands (29%), Luxembourg (27%)
  • Energy ­– Austria (30%), Luxembourg (27%)
  • Social policy ­ – France (100%), Cyprus (33%), Austria and Slovenia (30%)
  • Consumers ­ – Slovakia (33%)

Clearly, these percentages should be viewed in relation to the total number of cases in each Member State (see “Total column).

Directives for notification by next Scoreboard

In addition to today’s transposition deficit, it is also important to look at new directives coming on stream by 30 November 2023.

Given the number of directives to be transposed in the next 12 months (see above “Focus on short-overdue directives”, together with some particularly high backlogs, we can anticipate that several Member States won’t be able to meet the 1% target without drastic action. Nevertheless, the recent achievements of Romania in particular but also Greece, Lithuania and some other Member States show that considerable progress is possible in a short period of time.

More information

Single market directives are legal acts considered to have an impact on the functioning of the single market, as defined in Article 26(2) TFEU. This includes the four freedoms (freedom of movement of people, goods, services and capital) across borders within the EU, and supporting policies that have a direct impact on the single market. These policies include taxation, employment, culture, social policy, education, public health, energy, consumer protection, transport, environment (except nature protection), and information society and media.

The Annual Single Market Report was first published in 2021. The third reportSingle Market at 30” was published by the European Commission on 31 January 2023, complementing the publication of the annual Single Market Scoreboard alongside it. It marks the 30 years anniversary of the EU’s single market.

Upon the release of both reports, Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market said “Today’s reports provide additional evidence of the central role that the single market plays in our daily lives and in helping EU businesses and SMEs to grow and expand. Building on the success of the past 30 years, we will continue to work with Member States to ensure that they apply EU law properly and their administrations do not draw up new barriers in particular in the area of services. In the current geopolitical context and with fierce global competition, a well-functioning single market will be particularly vital for the EU’s competitiveness, job creation and resilience”.

In this regard, this year’s of the Annual Single Market Report takes stock of the integration of the single market over the last 30 years, highlighting the benefits and key achievements for people and businesses. It also discusses the single market from a longer-term perspective through the challenges that the EU is facing.

In particular, the report explores the potential of novel approaches, partnerships and collaborative tools in strengthening trust among authorities and of better cooperation in addressing persisting single market barriers and obstacles. It also touches upon the potential of digital technologies and user-friendly e-government solutions in helping reduce the administrative burdens for businesses and administrations.

The Communication "The Single Market at 30", published on 16 March 2023, looks ahead and calls on a renewed focus on enforcing existing single market rules, supported by benchmarks to address the deficits related to transposition and implementation of EU rules; and removing Member State-level barriers, in particular barriers to the cross-border provision of services, and in the industrial ecosystems with the greatest economic integration potential (retail, construction, tourism, business services and renewable energy sector).

In particular, the Commission, referring to its previous call on the Member States, proposes to set concrete targets on enforcement with the aim of limiting both the transposition as well as the conformity deficit to 0.5%.

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