Wednesday, 1 October 2008

EU: Privileged access prohibited II

Article III-74 of the draft Constitution, proposed by the European Convention, corresponds with Article 102 TEC, and it is located in Part III ‘The policies and functioning of the Union’, Title III ‘Internal policies and action’, Chapter II ‘Economic and monetary policy’, Section 1 ‘Economic policy’.

Article III-74 of the draft Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe, OJ 18.7.2003 C 169/40:

Article III-74 Draft Constitution

1. Any measure or provision, not based on prudential considerations, establishing privileged access by Union institutions, bodies or agencies, central governments, regional, local or other public authorities, other bodies governed by public law, or public undertakings of Member States to financial institutions shall be prohibited.

2. The Council of Ministers, on a proposal from the Commission, may adopt European regulations or decisions specifying definitions for the application of the prohibition referred to in paragraph 1. It shall act after consulting the European Parliament.

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Paragraph 1 added ‘provision’ and ‘agencies’ and replaces ‘Community’ by ‘Union’.

Paragraph 2 eliminated the target date long since passed and rewrote the decision-making procedure.

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The government of Sweden presented its views on the draft Constitution in ‘Europeiska konventet om EU:s framtid’ (Utrikesdepartementet, Departementsserien (Ds) 2003:58, 2003), but I found no reference to Article III-74.

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Ahead of the intergovernmental conference (IGC 2003─2004), the government of Sweden stated its positions on economic policy provisions, in ‘Europeiska konventet om EU:s framtid’ (Regeringens skrivelse 2003/04:13, den 2 oktober 2003), on pages 49─50, but I found no comment on Article III-74.

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Étienne de Poncins presented the proposed text of Article III-74 of the draft Constitution in ‘Vers une Constitution européenne’ (Éditions 10/18, 2003), page 295, without comment.

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In the following instalment we look at the prohibition of privileged access for public sector borrowers to financial institutions in the Constitutional Treaty.


Ralf Grahn