EU

COMPANY LAW - PUBLIC CONSULTATIONS

<p>DG Internal Market of the Commission has conducted two important consultations:<br />(i) Harmonisation of Securities (holding and transaction) Law - in anticipation of legislative proposals to be issued towards<br />the end of 2009.   <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/financial-markets/securities">http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/financial-markets/securities</a>-law/index_en.htm<br />(ii) Possible Statute for a European Foundation – the EU is considering creating this new legal form, and wants feedback on a feasibility study it commissioned on the subject. <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/consultations/">http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/consultations/</a>2009/foundation_en.htm </p>
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APPLICATION OF CRIMINAL SANCTIONS IN PURSUIT OF COMMUNITY POLICIES - SHIP SOURCE POLLUTION

<p>In 2008 the Commission issued a proposal for a directive applying criminal sanctions to reinforce the already-existing administrative and other penalties that can be applied to polluters. The European Parliament has backed the proposal.<br />See: <a href="http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef">http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef</a>=-//EP//NONSGML+REPORT+A6-20090080+0+DOC+PDF+V0//EN&language=EN </p>
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AUTHENTIC ACTS

<p>Despite the EP and French EU Presidency’s calls in late 2008 for rapid consideration of a legislative measure on the recognition and enforcement of authentic acts, the Commission has said that it will not issue a consultation before early 2010. When it does, the scope of the paper will likely extend to equivalent, non-notarial acts. That said, reference is made in the Brussels I review, so a watchful eye is on that. </p>
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MOTOR INSURANCE UNDER ROME II – COMMISSION CONSULTATION

<p>The Commission has just completed an important consultation on the effects of the application of foreign law on claims arising from cross-border road traffic accidents, currently dealt with under Article 4 of EC regulation 864/2007 (applicable law in non-contractual matters, aka “Rome II”). The Bar Council responded.<br /><a href="http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/consultations/2009/crossborder">http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/consultations/2009/crossborder</a>-accidents_en.htm </p>
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SUCCESSFUL VISIT OF THE CHAIRMAN OF THE BAR TO BRUSSELS

<p>At the end of March, the Chairman of the Bar, Desmond Browne QC, accompanied by the Vice Chairman, Nicholas Green QC, the Chairman of the Bar’s European Committee, Michael Patchett-Joyce, and a small delegation from the Bar Council secretariat, attended a series of high-level meetings in Brussels. Highlights included detailed and productive meetings with Sir Kim Darroch, UK Permanent Representative to the EU; Meglena Kuneva, Commissioner for Consumer Protection; Jonathan Faull, Director General, DG Justice Liberty and Security; Baroness Ashton, EU Trade Commissioner, and Philip Lowe, Director General, DG Competition. </p>
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INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: EXTENSION OF COPYRIGHT TERM

<p>The EP has supported the Commission’s 2008 proposal to extend copyright protection for performers and phonogram producers, from 50 to 70 years. See:<br /><a href="http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA">http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA</a>&language=EN&reference=P6-TA-2009-0282 </p>
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FORTHCOMING PROPOSAL ON SUCCESSION AND WILLS

<p>By the time of reading, the long-awaited Commission proposal for an EU regulation on jurisdiction and applicable law in the field of succession and wills should either have been adopted by the Commission, or put on ice until the autumn. When it is adopted, the default applicable law will almost certainly be that of the habitual residence of the testator at the time of death, subject to the exception of his having expressly chosen the law of his country of origin if different. The Chancery Bar Association will comment on the proposal once adopted. For a detailed editorial, see:<br /><a href="http://conflictoflaws.net/2008/guest-editorial-harris-on-reflectionson">http://conflictoflaws.net/2008/guest-editorial-harris-on-reflectionson</a>-the-proposed-eu-regulation-on-succession-and-wills/ </p>
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Bar Council to register its Brussels lobbying with European Transparency Initiative

<p>The Bar Council is to register its Brussels-based lobbying activities with the European Commission’s European Transparency Initiative (ETI). Established in 2008, the ETI is designed to promote transparency and ethical conduct in the representation of interests to the European Commission and other institutions of the European Union. </p> <p>Under the ETI the Bar Council will disclose details of its representational activity in Brussels and, through its consultant director, will abide by a code of conduct. The Bar Council maintains a representative office in Brussels in premises which are shared with other European professional bodies representing other bar associations and law societies. The Bar’s Brussels office monitors developments at the EU institutions and makes representations to them regularly on behalf of the Bar of England and Wales and in the public interest. While registration under the ETI register is currently voluntary, the European Commission has made it clear that it expects representative organisations to register and, if they do not, it will treat their representations with the same weight as any individual contribution. The activities of the Bar’s Specialist Bar Associations may also be covered by the ETI and the Bar Council has drawn the attention of those organisations to the desirability of registration. </p>
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PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT THROUGH THE CRIMINAL LAW

<p>Directive 2008/99/EC, whereby criminal sanctions can be applied for breach of environmental measures (Official Journal L 328 of 06/12/08 ), entered into force on 26 December 2008, and must be implemented into Member States’ law by the end of 2010. </p>
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GUIDANCE ON ROME II – APPLICABLE LAW IN NON-CONTRACTUAL MATTERS

<p>The Rome II regulation on applicable law in non-contractual obligations, definitively adopted in July 2007, entered into force on 11 January 2009. The Ministry of Justice has recently issued guidance on its application: </p> <p><a href="http://www.justice.gov.uk/publications/guidance">http://www.justice.gov.uk/publications/guidance</a>-rome-ii-non-contractual.htm </p> <p>  </p>
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