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Judgment of the Court of 30 January 1992. - Commission of the European Communities v Hellenic Republic. - Failure of a Member State to fulfil its obligations - Failure to comply with judgments declaring a Member State to have failed to fulfil its obligations. - Case C-328/90.



European Court reports 1992 Page I-00425



Summary

Parties

Grounds

Decision on costs

Operative part

Keywords



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Action for failure by a Member State to fulfil its obligations - Judgment of the Court declaring that a Member State has failed to fulfil its obligations - Period for compliance

(EEC Treaty, Art. 171)

Summary



The immediate and uniform application of Community law requires that the process of compliance with a judgment declaring that a Member State has failed to fulfil its obligations must be initiated immediately and must be completed as soon as possible.

Parties



In Case C-328/90,

Commission of the European Communities, represented by Maria Patakia, a member of its Legal Service, and Théofilos Margellos, a lecturer at the Université de Picardie, seconded to its Legal Service, acting as Agents, with an address for service in Luxembourg at the office of Roberto Hayder, a representative of the Legal Service, Wagner Centre, Kirchberg,

applicant,

v

Hellenic Republic, represented by Evi Skandalou, of the Athens Bar, and a member of the European Communities Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and subsequently by Vasileios Kontolaimos, Assistant Legal Adviser to the State, acting as Agents, with an address for service in Luxembourg at the Greek Embassy, 117 Val Sainte-Croix,

defendant,

APPLICATION for a declaration that by failing to take the necessary measures to comply with the judgment of 15 March 1988 in Case 147/86 Commission v Hellenic Republic [1988] ECR 1637 and the judgment of 14 July 1988 in Case 38/87 Commission v Hellenic Republic [1988] ECR 4415, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 171 of the EEC Treaty,

THE COURT,

composed of: O. Due, President, R. Joliet, F. Grévisse and P.J.G. Kapteyn, (Presidents of Chambers), C.N. Kakouris, J.C. Moitinho de Almeida, G.C. Rodríguez Iglesias, M. Díez de Velasco and M. Zuleeg, Judges,

Advocate General: F.G. Jacobs,

Registrar: H.A. Ruehl, Principal Administrator,

having regard to the Report for the Hearing,

after hearing oral argument from the parties at the hearing on

after hearing oral argument from the parties at the hearing on 21 November 1991,

after hearing the Opinion of the Advocate General at that hearing,

gives the following

Judgment

Grounds



1 By application lodged at the Court Registry on 23 October 1990, the Commission of the European Communities brought an action under Article 169 of the EEC Treaty for a declaration that by failing to take the necessary measures to comply with the judgment of 15 March 1988 in Case 147/86 Commission v Hellenic Republic [1988] ECR 1637, in which the Court declared that

"1. By prohibiting nationals of other Member States from setting up 'frontistiria' (coaching establishments) and private music and dancing schools, and from giving private lessons at home, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 52 and 59 of the EEC Treaty;

2. By prohibiting or by restricting access for nationals of other Member States already employed in Greece and of members of their families to the posts of director or teacher in 'frontistiria' and in private music and dancing schools, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 48 of the EEC Treaty",

and with the judgment of 14 July 1988 in Case 38/87 Commission v Hellenic Republic [1988] ECR 4415, in which the Court declared that

"1. By maintaining in force provisions which do not expressly uphold the right of nationals of other Member States to register as ordinary members of the Technical Chamber of Greece, where such registration is a precondition for and facilitates access to the professions of architect, civil engineer and surveyor and the exercise thereof in the Hellenic Republic, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 52 and 59 of the EEC Treaty",

the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 171 of the EEC Treaty.

2 Since it had received no notification of the measures which should have been taken by Greece to comply with those two judgments of the Court, the Commission initiated the procedure provided for in Article 169 of the Treaty, after which it brought the present action for failure to fulfil obligations.

3 Reference is made to the Report for the Hearing for a fuller account of the facts, the procedure and the pleas in law and arguments of the parties, which are mentioned or discussed hereinafter only in so far as is necessary for the reasoning of the Court.

4 The Commission claims that the fact that Greece has not yet amended its domestic legislation to comply with the abovementioned two judgments of 15 March and 14 July 1988 constitutes a failure to fulfil the obligation, imposed by Article 171 of the EEC Treaty, to take the necessary measures to comply with a judgment.

5 Greece simply states that the amendments to its domestic legislation necessary to comply with the two judgments of the Court are in the course of being drawn up and should shortly be published.

6 Even though Article 171 of the EEC Treaty does not specify the period within which a judgment must be complied with, the interest in the immediate and uniform application of Community law requires that the process of compliance with a judgment must be initiated immediately and must be completed as soon as possible (see the judgment in Case 169/87 Commission v France [1988] ECR 4093, paragraph 14).

7 It must therefore be held that there has been a failure to fulfil obligations as set out in the form of order sought by the Commission.

Decision on costs



Costs

8 Under Article 69(2) of the Rules of Procedure, the unsuccessful party is to be ordered to pay the costs. Since the Hellenic Republic has been unsuccessful, it must be ordered to pay the costs.

Operative part



On those grounds,

THE COURT

hereby:

1. Declares that by failing to take the necessary measures to comply with:

the judgment of 15 March 1988 in Case 147/86 Commission v Hellenic Republic, in which the Court held that:

"(1) By prohibiting nationals of other Member States from setting up 'frontistiria' (coaching establishments) and private music and dancing schools, and from giving private lessons at home, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 52 and 59 of the EEC Treaty;

(2) By prohibiting or by restricting access for nationals of other Member States already employed in Greece and of members of their families to the posts of director or teacher of 'frontistiria' and in private music and dancing schools, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 48 of the EEC Treaty";

and the judgment of 14 July 1988 in Case 38/87 Commission v Hellenic Republic, in which the Court held that:

"(1) By maintaining in force provisions which do not expressly uphold the right of nationals of the other Member States to register as ordinary members of the Technical Chamber of Greece, where such registration is a precondition for and facilitates access to the professions of architect, civil engineer and surveyor and the exercise thereof in the Hellenic Republic, the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 52 and 59 of the EEC Treaty";

the Hellenic Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 171 of the EEC Treaty;

2. Orders the Hellenic Republic to pay the costs.