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2019 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

Foreign Policy Without Unilateral Alternatives?

EU Member State Interests and the Imposition of Economic Sanctions

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Abstract

The intergovernmental character of cooperation in EU foreign and security policy often gives the impression that the Member States unilaterally pursuing their particular interests is an accepted form of behaviour. This chapter argues, however, that national governments are in fact seriously constrained by the current legal framework governing EU external action, in particular its regime for imposing economic sanctions on third countries or individuals. In this regard, it has serious implications that EU economic sanctions, despite having foreign and security policy objectives, cannot be separated from the principles underpinning the Common Commercial Policy. This link with an exclusive EU competence clearly sets the boundaries of Member State particularism and lays out the potential limits of deviations from EU law. Under this frame, unilateral Member State actions are only accepted if the strict conditions required by EU law are fulfilled. The aim of this chapter is to explore these conditions and the opportunities provided by them for the Member States to promote their national interests in the field of international economic sanctions.
Footnotes
1
Article 347 TFEU reads as follows: “Member States shall consult each other with a view to taking together the steps needed to prevent the functioning of the internal market being affected by measures which a Member State may be called upon to take in the event of serious internal disturbances affecting the maintenance of law and order, in the event of war, serious international tension constituting a threat of war, or in order to carry out obligations it has accepted for the purpose of maintaining peace and international security.”
 
2
Opinion of 4 October 1979, International Agreement on Rubber, EU:C:1979:224.
 
3
Council Regulation (EEC) 596/82 of 15 March 1982 amending the import arrangements for certain products originating in the USSR, [1982] OJ L72/15.
 
4
It contained a vague reference to the discussion taking place in the EPC by stating that “the interests of the Community require that imports from the USSR be reduced”.
 
5
Council Regulation (EEC) 597/82 of 15 March 1982 suspending in respect of Greece certain commercial policy measures applicable to imports originating in the USSR, [1982] OJ L72/19.
 
6
Council Regulation (EEC) 877/82 of 16 April 1982 suspending imports of all products originating in Argentina, [1982] OJ L102/1.
 
7
Council Regulation (EEC) 1176/82 of 18 May 1982 extending the suspension of imports of all products originating in Argentina, [1982] OJ L136/1; Council Regulation (EEC) 1254/82 of 24 May 1982 extending the suspension of imports of all products originating in Argentina, [1982] OJ L146/1.
 
8
Judgment of 17 October 1995, Fritz Werner Industrie-Ausrüstungen GmbH v Federal Republic of Germany, C-70/94, EU:C:1995:328.
 
9
Judgment of 17 October 1995, Criminal proceedings against Peter Leifer, Reinhold Otto Krauskopf and Otto Holzer, C-83/94, EU:C:1995:329.
 
10
In Leifer, the interpretation extended to (current) Articles 346(1)(b) and 347 TFEU and Articles 1 and 11 of Council Regulation (EEC) 2603/69 of 20 December 1969 establishing common rules for exports, [1969] OJ L324/25.
 
11
Opinion of 4 October 1979, International Agreement on Rubber, EU:C:1979:224.
 
12
Council Regulation (EEC) 2603/69 of 20 December 1969 establishing common rules for exports, [1969] OJ L324/25.
 
13
Judgment of 17 October 1995, Fritz Werner Industrie-Ausrüstungen GmbH v Federal Republic of Germany, C-70/94, EU:C:1995:328, paragraphs 9–29; Judgment of 17 October 1995, Criminal proceedings against Peter Leifer, Reinhold Otto Krauskopf and Otto Holzer, C-83/94, EU:C:1995:329, paragraphs 9–30.
 
14
Council Regulation (EEC) 1432/92 of 1 June 1992 prohibiting trade between the European Economic Community and the Republics of Serbia and Montenegro, [1992] OJ L151/4.
 
15
Judgment of 14 January 1997, The Queen, ex parte Centro-Com Srl v HM Treasury and Bank of England, C-124/95, EU:C:1997:8, paragraphs 23–30.
 
16
Ibid. paragraphs 31–42.
 
17
Article 228a TEC provided: “[w]here it is provided, in a common position or in a joint action adopted according to the provisions of the Treaty on European Union relating to the common foreign and security policy, for an action by the Community to interrupt or to reduce, in part or completely, economic relations with one or more third countries, the Council shall take the necessary urgent measures. The Council shall act by a qualified majority on a proposal from the Commission.”
 
18
Article 73g(1) TEC provided: “If, in the cases envisaged in Article 228a, action by the Community is deemed necessary, the Council may, in accordance with the procedure provided for in Article 228a, take the necessary urgent measures on the movement of capital and on payments as regards the third countries concerned.”
 
19
Judgment of the Court of First Instance of 21 September 2005, Ahmed Ali Yusuf and Al Barakaat International Foundation v Council of the European Union and Commission of the European Communities, T-306/01, EU:T:2005:331, paragraphs 122–135; Judgment of the Court of First Instance of 21 September 2005, Yassin Abdullah Kadi v Council of the European Union and Commission of the European Communities, T-315/01, EU:T:2005:332, paragraphs 87–99.
 
20
AG Maduro Opinion of 16 January 2008, Yassin Abdullah Kadi and Al Barakaat International Foundation v Council of the European Union and Commission of the European Communities, C-402/05 P and C-415/05 P, EU:C:2008:11, paragraphs 11–16.
 
21
Judgment of 3 September 2008, Yassin Abdullah Kadi and Al Barakaat International Foundation v Council of the European Union and Commission of the European Communities, C-402/05 P and C-415/05 P, EU:C:2008:461, paragraph 125.
 
22
Ibid. paragraphs 226–227.
 
23
Judgment of 19 July 2012, European Parliament v Council of the European Union, C-130/10, EU:C:2012:472, paragraph 52.
 
24
Article 75 TFEU provides: “Where necessary to achieve the objectives set out in Article 67, as regards preventing and combating terrorism and related activities, the European Parliament and the Council, acting by means of regulations in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, shall define a framework for administrative measures with regard to capital movements and payments, such as the freezing of funds, financial assets or economic gains belonging to, or owned or held by, natural or legal persons, groups or non-State entities. The Council, on a proposal from the Commission, shall adopt measures to implement the framework referred to in the first paragraph. The acts referred to in this Article shall include necessary provisions on legal safeguards.”
 
25
Judgment of 19 July 2012, European Parliament v Council of the European Union, C-130/10, EU:C:2012:472.
 
26
Judgment of 11 June 1991, Commission of the European Communities v Council of the European Communities, C-300/89, EU:C:1991:244.
 
27
Judgment of 19 July 2012, European Parliament v Council of the European Union, C-130/10, EU:C:2012:472, paragraph 78.
 
28
Ibid. paragraph 63.
 
29
Ibid. paragraph 80.
 
30
AG Jacobs Opinion of 6 April 1995, Commission of the European Communities v Hellenic Republic, C-120/94, EU:C:1995:109.
 
31
Judgment of 15 May 1986, Johnston, 222/84, EU:C:1986:206, paragraph 27.
 
32
Council Decision 2010/573/CFSP of 27 September 2010 concerning restrictive measures against the leadership of the Transnistrian region of the Republic of Moldova; amended by Council Decision 2012/527/CFSP and Council Decision (CFSP) 2016/1908, [2010] OJ L253/160.
 
33
Judgment of 27 February 2007, Segi, Araitz ZubimendiIzaga and Aritza Galarraga v Council of the European Union, C-355/04 P, EU:C:2007:116, paragraph 52.
 
34
Judgment of the Court (Grand Chamber) of 16 June 2005, Criminal proceedings against Maria Pupino, C-105/03, EU:C:2005:386, paragraph 42.
 
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Metadata
Title
Foreign Policy Without Unilateral Alternatives?
Author
Viktor Szép
Copyright Year
2019
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-05782-4_15

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