EU competition law consists of four main poles, (i) Article 101 of TFEU (prohibition of anticompetitive agreements), (ii) Article 102 of TFEU (prohibition of abuse of dominant market positions), (iii) Council Regulation on Mergers (prohibition of mergers impeding significantly competition) and (iv) Article 107 of TFEU (prohibition of anticompetitive Sate aids).
EU competition law cannot actively create market integration itself in the internal market, but can promote market integration in the internal market by prohibiting anticompetitive agreements, abuse of market dominant positions, mergers significantly impeding competition and anticompetitive State aid. EU competition law has actually brought substantial contributions to promote market integration in the internal market.
Article 101 of TFEU prohibits horizontal agreements among competitors to fix prices, limit production, share markets or customers and vertical agreements between a supplier and distributors to fix resale prices and to restrict distributors’ territory or customers or parallel importation. Article 101 of TFEU protects free and open competition in the internal market from anticompetitive agreements.
Article 102 of TFEU prohibits abuse of dominant market positions. Abuse of dominant market positions include exclusionary abuse (ex. refusing to supply essential facilities) and exploitative abuse (ex. charging unreasonably high prices). Article 102 of TFEU protects fair and open competition in the internal market from abuse of dominant market positions.
Article 2(3) of Council Regulation on Mergers prohibits a merger which would significantly impede effective competition in the common market or in a substantial part of it, in particular as a result of the creation or strengthening of a dominant position. Article 2(3) of Council Regulation on Mergers protects free and open competition in the internal market from the creation or strengthening of a dominant position by mergers.
Article 107 of TFEU prohibits State aids which distort competition by favoring certain undertakings or the production of certain goods. Article 107 of TFEU protects fair competition in the internal market from discriminatory state aids.
Main task of competition policy is to preserve a fair level-playing field in the internal market. Joaquin Almunia, Vice President of European Commission for Competition Policy says, “Competition has been of primary importance for Europe’s response since the financial crisis erupted over three years ago. As the crisis-in its different forms-continues to beleaguer us, competition policy remains of crucial importance,”
In 1985 the European Commission produced its White Paper to the European Council setting out its programme for the completion of the internal or single market in the European Community by the end of 1992. This programme consisted of some 300 legislative measures needed to guarantee the free movement of goods, persons, services and capital within the Community. The economic integration was truly the most advanced in the world and epoch-making in the history of the European Community/Union. The European Council agreed to the programme and decided to revise the EEC Treaty by the Single European Act, which came into force in July 1987.
Before the market integration, the Community economy stagnated for more than five years due to lacking competitiveness vis-à-vis the United States and Japan. The single market integration stimulated international oligopolistic competition within the Community and beyond. The economic growth of the Community rose to more than 3% for three years from 1988 on. The economic structure of the Community was renewed and became much more competitive than before.
The single market became a fundamental driving force of the monetary union with the EMS. In the 21st century, it contained Central and Eastern European countries, developing the pan-European production networks.
After the world economic crisis, when the demand-side stimulation of the economic growth in the European Union has been narrowly limited, the re-launch of the single market will be an effective measure to revitalize the economy. On the basis of the Monti Report of 2010, the Union is going towards the introduction of the European Market Act, which will be agreed until the end of 2012 according to today’s plan of the European Commission.
The first single market integration, which was combined with the name of Jacques Delores, had a strategy to move oligopolistic giant companies of the Community. The second generation of the single market integration gives weight to socio-political legitimacy of the single market and seems to move consumers, workers or people of peripheral regions who could not realize benefits of the single market. At the same time, it aims to extract economic benefits from digital information technologies or other recent technical innovations. The single market is about credibility for market players including consumers etc. on the basis of hard competence and the Community method. If done properly, it can turn into a lever for higher growth in the EU following the crisis.
The article analyses EU’s institutional response to crisis of the Eurozone of 2010-2011. Using examples of the 2010 loan package for Greece, the EU’s 2010-2011 assistance schemes for Ireland and Portugal and the escalation of the Eurozone crisis in 2011, the article argues that neither the Lisbon Treaty nor specific Eurozone’s rules provided the EU with instruments to tackle the crisis efficiently. In contrast, it is demontrated that the legal framework of the EU made action of the Eurozone states more complicated and problematic from the legal point of view. Therefore, the European elites had to improvise and look for non-elegant ad hoc institutional solutions on the margins of the Lisbon Treaty. The article then focuses on individual forms of this institutional improvisation (Greek Loan Facility, European Financial Stability Facility, European Financial Stability Mechanism, behavior of the European Central Bank) and analyses their legality and legitimacy.
This article aims at examining the modernization of EU competition law, in particular the decentralization of its enforcement, in the context of EU constitutional structure. EU legal order is constructed on the basis of the primacy of EU law over national laws. This principle is a fundamental principle of EU law and has caused serious tensions with national constitutions from the inception of European integration. Despite established jurisprudence of the European Court of Justice, several constitutional courts in the Member States do not fully accept the principle of primacy against their national constitutions, and then the constitutional pluralism has emerged to peacefully control such tensions.
It is widely believed that the field of EU competition law keeps some distance from such tensions. This is because EU competition law had been actually enforced only by the European Commission before 2004, and had no actual chance to have conflict with national constitutions. However, the decentralization of enforcement of EU competition law is likely to alter such a peaceful landscape between EU competition law and national constitutions. After the introduction of decentralized enforcement, EU competition law is now enforced by both the Commission and national competition authorities. National courts in the EU Member States are also able to fully apply EU competition law. As a result, a possibility that unconstitutionality of national application of EU competition law would be claimed before national courts has arisen. Above all, a conflict with human rights protected by the constitution is likely to happen. However, since national enforcement relies upon national procedural law, this possibility still remains theoretical. The constitutional pluralism mainly targets the tensions between EU law and national constitutions, but it also explains the general relationship between two legal orders. Therefore, assuming that the constitutional pluralism correctly understands the present legal phenomena in EU, the field of competition law cannot be excluded from the sphere of its argument.
This paper analyzes European debt crisis since 2009, which includes not only Greece but other southern European countries.
At first, we point out four problems with introduction of the Euro, which are insufficient convergence criteria, Greek participation, lack of economic governance for economic crisis, disparities of productivity among member countries.
Convergence criteria in Maastricht did not include external balance criteria, and real economic factor criteria, such as productivity parities. This is fundamental reason for the crisis. As operational problem, Greek participation should not have been authorized because of fiscal deficits. Also, Economic Governance after introduction of the Euro does not have some equipment for prevention of financial and fiscal crisis.
Especially, lack of fiscal integration causes to be late for determination of bail-out toward fiscal crisis countries. Such as a case of Greek fiscal crisis, Euro area countries insufficiently execute bail-out with default.
As a result, we propose new economic governance for prevention and safety-net of the crisis. This original plan proposes fiscal integration in the euro area by the means of European fiscal authority and Euro common bonds. However, we suggest introduction of default for a fiscal crisis country because the burdens of the country should be decreased for the future growth and stability. Of course, the default gives serious negative shock toward investors, including financial institutions. Therefore, introduction of regime with default should be secured by cooperation among the Euro area countries, such as Euro common bonds, Our proposal may strengthen fiscal integration with single monetary policy in the Euro area.
As Greer (2005, p. 216) noted, what Europe has in the field of agriculture is, rather than common agricultural policy, common framework for the negotiation of fundamental tensions on agriculture between the member states, and differentiation and diversity between them are built-in aspects of the CAP. This paper is structured for the purpose of sharing the view of Greer (2005) and pointing out that discretion of each member state is expanding, especially regarding cross compliance and the EAFRD, both of which were not discussed in Greer (2005).
This paper is organized as follows. Section 1 focuses on the CAP reforms after 1992. After their details are described, Daugbjerg and Swinbank (2009) is referred to because it provides a closer look into the CAP reform process. While it applies two ideas (agricultural exceptionalism / agricultural normalism) to plot the process, this paper analyses the CAP reforms from the point of view of renationalization, which means the expansion of discretion of a member state on the decision-making of the CAP. Section 2 presents how the CAP was established, showing that a story that its birth has made agricultural policy differences across Europe disappear is a fantasy in the early years of the European integration. Then the focus is on the fact that, after mid-1980s when agri-environmental problems emerged, the EU has increasingly accepted those policy measures under common rules (for example, regulation or directive) which vary among member states. Section 3 analyses two policy measures whose importance is rising in this decade, cross compliance and the EAFRD. Cross compliance forms a link between the direct payment and compliance with certain rules regarding land use, animal welfare, and so on. Since some rules on cross compliance are laid down by a member state (or its region), the fact that cross compliance gets emphasized means expansion of discretion of a member state. As well as cross compliance, the EAFRD, established in 2005, also brings about the effect of the expansion of discretion, because it respects innovative governance through locally based and bottom up approaches to rural development. In addition, it inherits the principle of additionality from the structural policy and, therefore, can jeopardize one of the CAP principles, financial solidarity.
This paper considers whether and to what extent the introduction of Union citizenship has contributed to extending the freedom of the nationals of the Member States. The paper first overviews the development of the European Court of Justice (ECJ)’s case-law on the right of free movement of Community workers since the 1960s; then the paper highlights the major ECJ cases dealing with the Union citizens’ right to free movement and residence in the Union since the 1990s. Those cases include Martínez Sala (C-85/96), Grzelczyk (C-184/99), Baumbast (C-413/99), Carpenter (C-60/00), Garcia Avello (C-148/02), Zhu and Chen (C-200/02), Rottmann (C-135/08), Zambrano (C-34/09) and Macarthy (C-434/09).
The cases reveal several points: firstly, Union citizens’ right to free movement and residence (Article 21 TFEU) has not contributed to a wider freedom of movement because the Directive 2004/38 has subjected the exercise of the movement/residence right to several economic conditions.
Secondly, however, the ECJ has found the basic article that creates Union citizenship (Article 20 TFEU) a different and original role, to ensure continuous residence of the Union citizens even in the Member State of their own under limited circumstances: in Rottman,Zambrano and Macarthy, the ECJ repeatedly emphasized that citizenship of the Union was intended to be the fundamental status of nationals of the Member States, and that Article 20 TFEU precluded those measures taken by their own State that had the effect of depriving Union citizens of “the genuine enjoyment of the substance of the rights conferred by virtue of their status as citizens of the Union.”
Thirdly, the exact “substance” of a resident Union citizenship is still not clear. Although the national court that referred the Zambrano case to the ECJ indicated the possible interpretation that incorporates those rights listed in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights into the “substance” of Union citizenship, the ECJ did not respond to that specific question.
Lastly, it is now clear that EU law on Union citizenship can restrict the Member States’ exercise of immigration control power as long as that power affects the secure residence of any Union citizen of minor age (including the Member States’ own nationals) and his or her family of any (even third country) nationality: the situation that the Member States control their own nationals and third country nationals used to be a “purely internal” situation that excluded the application of EU law. Union citizenship case-law has penetrated into that situation in order to ensure the genuine enjoyment of the substance of the Union citizens’ rights. How far the penetration would extend remains to be seen.
Henry Kissinger, Richard Nixon’s National Security Advisor, proposed to renew the Atlantic relations in 1973: the year was called the “Year of Europe”. Interestingly, Dr. Kissinger suggested including Japan in this proposal as well. This was because the US government considered that Japan, which had recently normalized diplomatic relations with China, should have a greater connection to Western powers during an era of détente. From the outset, the reactions of EC countries to the Kissinger proposal were negative. They disliked, in particular, the US strategy of linking defence, trade and monetary matters into “one ball of wax”. The Japanese government was also initially surprised by Kissinger’s call, but responded to it positively. However, Japan made it clear that Japan could not participate in defence co-operation at the same level of NATO because of its constitutional restrictions.
It is clear that the US and Japan wanted to produce a US-EC-Japan trilateral declaration, but the EC opposed it. France, in particular, refused it strongly, because, according to the French, it represented a triangle that placed America at the top. Paris feared the possibility of Washington’s predominance through such a declaration. Therefore, the EC made a counter-proposal for Japan to draft an EC-Japan bilateral declaration. European leaders considered that Japan was important in world affairs. They therefore offered the idea of a series of bilateral declarations between the EC-US, the US-Japan, and the EC-Japan. Dr. Kissinger was angry at the EC’s manoeuvres. Initially, the Japanese hesitated over the European approach. Although they ultimately hoped for a trilateral declaration, they decided to initiate bilateral talks with the EC. This was done because Tokyo began to suspect that the prospect of a trilateral declaration in the near future appeared slim.
The Middle East crisis of 1973 seriously deteriorated the US-EC relationships. This put Japan in a difficult situation. In the end, the Americans ceased negotiations with the EC on a US-EC declaration. This meant that there was no possibility to forge a US-EC-Japan trilateral declaration in the future. Given such tense relations between the US and EC, an EC-Japan bilateral declaration would be regarded as an anti-American act. Thus, Japan could not explore this option. Tokyo quietly disengaged from the whole project of the Kissinger Exercise (including an EC-Japan bilateral declaration).
In the aftermath of the Lehman Brothers’ fall, not only the leading countries of the EU but also the new member states (NMS) were facing challenges from economic recession. During the crisis, because of the strong financial inter-linkage relationships among the European Countries, there was concern whether the western European nations would be infected by the financial crisis occurring in some of the NMS. However, even the Baltic countries, which were the most severely affected by the crisis, did not plunge into the situation as did some of the East Asian countries which had experienced a similar crisis in 1997.
The aim of this paper is to examine that why the policies implemented by the NMS succeeded in overcoming the crisis. The author particularly verifies the characteristics of the banking sectors in the NMS and the policy responses of euro-pegged countries both before and during the crisis. The data that are referenced in this paper are from the BIS, multinational bank statistics, Eurostat, and national central banks.
On the aspect of the banking sectors, it should be the noted that the liquidity of local subsidiaries was preserved. Since the 1990s, some multinational banks which are called “common lenders” had expanded into the NMS and became those countries’ major banks. At the same time, on the background of the EU’s integration, these banks had also provided retail banking services over a long term. Furthermore, on the basis of the Vienna Initiative, the foreign parent banks, the authorities of home-host countries, and the international financial institutions had participated in multiple lending during the crisis.
On the aspect of policy responses, what is important is that the fixed exchange rate system was maintained. Depending on the implementation of internal economic adjustments, such as reduction in wages and fiscal restraint, the international competitiveness of exports was restored external debt was also kept at a steady level.
In the near future, it is necessary to examine whether the dominant oligopoly of multinational banks will maintain the stability and robustness of the banking sectors and the within the area of NMS. At least, from the case of the current crisis, it is obvious that the dominant oligopoly of multinational banks can avoid rapid and massive capital outflows, and the contagion of crisis.