European Union – Public service contracts. The Court of Justice of the European Union gave a preliminary ruling deciding, among other things that, in the context of the application of the Court's case-law on direct awards of so-called 'in-house' public contracts, in order to determine whether the contractor carried out the essential part of its activity for the contracting authority, including local authorities which were its controlling shareholders, an activity imposed on that contractor by a non-shareholder public authority for the benefit of local authorities which were also not shareholders of that contractor and did not exercise any control over it should not be taken into account, since that activity had to be regarded as being carried out for third parties.