European Union – Consumer protection. The Court of Justice of the European Union gave a preliminary ruling, deciding, among other things, that arts 3(1) and 4 of Council Directive (EEC) 93/13 had to be interpreted as meaning that: (i) the examination of the potential unfairness of a term of a contract concluded between a seller or supplier and a consumer required it to be determined whether that term caused a significant imbalance in the parties' rights and obligations under a contract to the detriment of the consumer. That examination had to be carried out in the light of national rules which, in the absence of an agreement between the parties, were applicable, the means which the consumer had at his disposal under national law to bring an end to the use of that type of term, the nature of the goods or services covered by the contract at issue and all the circumstances surrounding the conclusion of the contract; (ii) where the national court considered that a contractual term relating to the calculation of ordinary interest was not in plain intelligible language, within the meaning of art 4(2) of the Directive, it was required to examine whether that term was unfair within the meaning of art 3(1) of the Directive. In the context of that examination, it was the duty of the referring court, among other things, to compare the method of calculation of the rate of ordinary interest laid down in that term and the actual sum resulting from that rate with the methods of calculation generally used, the statutory interest rate and the interest rates applied on the market at the date of conclusion of the agreement at issue in the main proceedings for a loan of a comparable sum and term to those of the loan agreement under consideration; and (iii) as regards the assessment by a national court of the potential unfairness of the term relating to accelerated repayment resulting from a failure on the part of the debtor to comply with his obligations during a limited specific period, it was for the referring court to examine whether the right of the seller or supplier to call in the totality of the loan was conditional upon the non-compliance by the consumer with an obligation which was of essential importance in the context of the contractual relationship in question, whether that right was provided for in cases in which such non-compliance was sufficiently serious in the light of the term and amount of the loan, whether that right derogated from the applicable common law rules, where specific contractual provisions were lacking, and whether national law provided for adequate and effective means enabling the consumer subject to such a term to remedy the effects of the loan being called in.