Yearbook of European Law - Vol. 14

By Francis Geoffrey Jacobs | Go to book overview

The External Competence of the Community and the Case-Law of the Court of Justice: Principle versus Pragmatism

TAKIS TRIDIMAS AND PIET EECKHOUT


Introduction

It has been said that the influence of the European Court of Justice in the expansion of the external competence of the Community is a distinctive characteristic of Community law unique in the history of national and international legal orders.1 The purpose of this article is to discuss selected aspects of the case-law of the Court concerning competence, in particular, competence to conclude international agreements. An examination of the case-law leads to the conclusion that the Court has followed a pragmatic approach, that the question of Community competence should not be approached in the abstract, and that pronouncements of the Court on competence are of relative value. That is not intended to be a criticism of the Court. The notion of competence is different from the notions of primacy and direct effect, in the application of which the Court has, for good reasons, followed a strict approach. The principle of primacy and the principle of direct effect are the distinctive qualities of Community law-the pillars on which the Community system of judicial protection is founded. Both principles refer to the relationship between Community law and national law and assume that Community law governs a given situation. Whether that is the case depends on whether the Community has competence to act in the respective field. That in turn raises the issue of the division of competences between the Community and the Member States. Whereas with regard to primacy and direct effect a strict approach is justified, different considerations apply with regard to competence. In an entity such as the Community, which is now a component of the Union, the division of competences between the Community and the Member States is not susceptible to strict judicial demarcation. It is par excellence a political issue where flexibility should prevail.

____________________
1
See E. Stein "External Relations of the European Community: Structure and Process" in Collected Courses of the Academy of European Law, Vol I, Book 1 ( Martinus Nijhoff 1990) 115-88, at 127-8.
© Takis Tridimas and Piet Eeckhout, 1994. Court of Justice of the European Communities, and University of Ghent, University of Brussels and Court of Justice of the European Communities respectively. All views expressed are personal to the authors. Our thanks to K. St. C. Bradley for helpful comments in an earlier draft of this article.

-143-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Yearbook of European Law - Vol. 14
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 764

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.