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EU freedom of movement

Freedom of movement in the European Union (EU) means that EU citizens in general can move freely within and between the EU member states. The European Single Market guarantees EU citizens four freedoms: the freedom of goods, services, capital and people. In the European Economic Community, freedom of movement existed already since 1958. However, this freedom of movement applied exclusively to the right to seek employment in another member state. Following the passing of the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, EU citizens are now allowed to move freely to other EU member states to live, study, work or trade there without applying for visas or residence permits. They are entitled to participate in municipal elections in their place of residence.