Free Movement, Federalism and Institutional Choice: A Canada-EU Comparison

40 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2012 Last revised: 6 Dec 2012

See all articles by Alicia Hinarejos

Alicia Hinarejos

McGill University, Faculty of Law

Date Written: December 1, 2011


Although very different in many respects, the EU and Canada nevertheless confront common problems in certain areas. One such common problem is how to manage inter-state regulatory diversity within a federal (or federal-like), multinational system. This paper compares the different ways in which the EU and Canada have chosen to address the problem of national barriers to trade within their internal markets, and the consequences of these choices. It is somewhat counter-intuitive for EU lawyers that a full-fledged state may have an internal market that is less integrated than that of the EU; and yet that is the case in Canada. The comparison is illuminating as to the different possible approaches of federal polities to the problem of state regulatory choices and barriers to trade, the paramount importance of institutional choice, and the significance of historical and political circumstances.

Keywords: European Union, European integration, EU law, constitutional law of the EU, Canada, federalism, dual federalism, classic federalism, cooperative federalism, separation of competences, single market, free movement, institutional choice, Court of Justice of the EU, Supreme Court of Canada

JEL Classification: K1, K2, K3, K4

Suggested Citation

Hinarejos, Alicia, Free Movement, Federalism and Institutional Choice: A Canada-EU Comparison (December 1, 2011). Cambridge Law Journal, 2012, University of Cambridge Faculty of Law Research Paper No. 28/2012, Available at SSRN:

Alicia Hinarejos (Contact Author)

McGill University, Faculty of Law ( email )

3644 Peel Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1W9

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