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European internal market

Module information>

Academic Direction
UCL, Queen Mary University of London
Modes of Study

This course aims to provide you with advanced knowledge and critical understanding of the rules and principles underpinning the EU internal markets.

You’ll enjoy studying the law of the EU internal markets if you’re interested in trade law and you want to know how cross boarder trans-national markets function, if you have an interest in EU law and politics and if you’re interested in law beyond stereotypical classifications. This course presents a study of the most advanced and most successful trans-national legal framework concerning trade. It will help you identify and comprehend the foundations of the EU internal market as a distinct form of economic integration and the practical implications that arise from its existence.

Module A: The scope of the ‘four freedoms’


  • Introduction to the four freedoms
  • Material scope: notion of economic activity
  • Wholly internal situations
  • Personal scope: public and private parties
  • Personal scope: third country nationals

Module B: Free movement 1 - Equal treatment and non-discrimination


  • Equal treatment and non-discrimination
  • Distinctly applicable/directly discriminatory rules
  • Indistinctly applicable/indirectly discriminatory rules
  • Amplifying/dampening non-discrimination claims: citizenship and fiscal sovereignty issues
  • Treaty-based limitations and exceptions to the market freedoms

Module C: Free movement 2 - Beyond discrimination


  • Restrictions on internal market freedoms
  • Mandatory requirements/overriding requirements of the general interest
  • Proportionality
  • Mandatory requirements and distinctly applicable/discriminatory measures
  • Procedural requirements applied to justifications and exceptions
  • The limits of a restrictions-based analysis

Module D: Regulation of the internal market


  • Creating and regulating the internal market – history and overview
  • Mutual recognition and co-ordination of national regulatory systems – harmonisation
  • Legal basis and legislative procedural issues relating to internal market legislation
  • Sectoral examples of harmonising legislation
  • Regulatory structures and actors: comitology and regulatory agencies – private and self-regulation


Each module is assessed by a 45-minute unseen written exam.


It is strongly recommended that you attempt Module A followed by module B.

How to apply

You can apply to study a module individually as a standalone unit or as part of a Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Master of Laws qualification.

These modules also contribute towards the following specialist pathways for Laws:

  • Commercial and Corporate Law
  • Economic Regulation
  • European Law
  • International Business Law
  • Public Law

Apply via Postgraduate Laws.