The Europeanization of Private Law in Central and Eastern Europe Countries (CEECs): Preliminary Findings and Research Agenda
114 Pages Posted: 30 Oct 2010 Last revised: 6 Aug 2014
Date Written: July 1, 2013
Since its creation, European Union (hereinafter: ‘the EU’) has experienced various enlargements. In 1973, Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom joined the EU. Greece became a Member in 1981 and was followed by Spain and Portugal in 1986. Austria, Finland and Sweden acceded to the EU in 1995. In 2004, ten Central and Eastern European Countries (hereinafter: ‘the CEECs’) became EU members. Finally, another two CEECs, i.e. Bulgaria and Romania, joined the EU on 1 January 2007. What impact did previous enlargements have on national systems of private law? It is an important question since there are on-going accession negotiations with Croatia and Turkey and other countries (Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania Serbia and Montenegro, Ukraine and Moldova) are also interested in acceding to the EU. As well as these countries, Russia has also developed specific relationships with the EU which affect its private law system. Learning from previous experience may help in structuring a better pattern of Europeanization. But the broader question is whether the process of ‘Europeanization’ of private law in the CEECs can be considered as concluded with membership or rather whether ‘regional policies’ are needed to contextualize the implementation of EU law and to govern its spill-overs. This special issue brings together four different contributions on the impact of EU law on the national private law systems in the CEECs in three important fields of regulatory private law, i.e. competition law, consumer law and securities law, which have been profoundly affected by EU law. The overall conclusion is that the Europeanization of private law in the CEECs can no longer be regarded as a one way process in which the EU defines the standards to be implemented in the CEECs without a thorough analysis of the starting conditions and special needs of these countries. What is needed is an approach which turns the perspective upside down and looks at the EU enlargement policy through the eyes of the CEECs.
Keywords: European private law, enlargement, European agreements, stabilisation and association agreements, accession agreements, competition law, consumer law, securities law
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