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Services Directive
Article 16

Article 16 — Freedom to provide services

  1. Member States shall respect the right of providers to provide services in a Member State other than that in which they are established.

    The Member State in which the service is provided shall ensure free access to and free exercise of a service activity within its territory.

    Member States shall not make access to or exercise of a service activity in their territory subject to compliance with any requirements which do not respect the following principles:

    1. non-discrimination: the requirement may be neither directly nor indirectly discriminatory with regard to nationality or, in the case of legal persons, with regard to the Member State in which they are established;
    2. necessity: the requirement must be justified for reasons of public policy, public security, public health or the protection of the environment;
    3. proportionality: the requirement must be suitable for attaining the objective pursued, and must not go beyond what is necessary to attain that objective.
  2. Member States may not restrict the freedom to provide services in the case of a provider established in another Member State by imposing any of the following requirements:
    1. an obligation on the provider to have an establishment in their territory;
    2. an obligation on the provider to obtain an authorisation from their competent authorities including entry in a register or registration with a professional body or association in their territory, except where provided for in this Directive or other instruments of Community law;
    3. a ban on the provider setting up a certain form or type of infrastructure in their territory, including an office or chambers, which the provider needs in order to supply the services in question;
    4. the application of specific contractual arrangements between the provider and the recipient which prevent or restrict service provision by the self-employed;
    5. an obligation on the provider to possess an identity document issued by its competent authorities specific to the exercise of a service activity;
    6. requirements, except for those necessary for health and safety at work, which affect the use of equipment and material which are an integral part of the service provided;
    7. restrictions on the freedom to provide the services referred to in Article 19.
  3. The Member State to which the provider moves shall not be prevented from imposing requirements with regard to the provision of a service activity, where they are justified for reasons of public policy, public security, public health or the protection of the environment and in accordance with paragraph 1. Nor shall that Member State be prevented from applying, in accordance with Community law, its rules on employment conditions, including those laid down in collective agreements.
  4. By 28 December 2011 the Commission shall, after consultation of the Member States and the social partners at Community level, submit to the European Parliament and the Council a report on the application of this Article, in which it shall consider the need to propose harmonisation measures regarding service activities covered by this Directive.