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Document 61981CJ0030

Judgment of the Court of 17 December 1981.
Commission of the European Communities v Italian Republic.
Failure to fulfil an obligation - Implementation of harmonization directives.
Joined cases 30 to 34/81.

European Court Reports 1981 -03379

ECLI identifier: ECLI:EU:C:1981:317

61981J0030

Judgment of the Court of 17 December 1981. - Commission of the European Communities v Italian Republic. - Failure to fulfil an obligation - Implementation of harmonization directives. - Joined cases 30 to 34/81.

European Court reports 1981 Page 03379


Summary
Parties
Subject of the case
Grounds
Decision on costs
Operative part

Keywords


MEMBER STATES - OBLIGATIONS - IMPLEMENTATION OF DIRECTIVES - FAILURE TO FULFIL OBLIGATIONS - JUSTIFICATION - NOT POSSIBLE

( EEC TREATY , ART . 169 )

Summary


A MEMBER STATE MAY NOT PLEAD PROVISIONS , PRACTICES OR CIRCUMSTANCES EXISTING IN ITS INTERNAL LEGAL SYSTEM IN ORDER TO JUSTIFY A FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH OBLIGATIONS RESULTING FROM COMMUNITY DIRECTIVES .

Parties


IN JOINED CASES 30 TO 34/81

COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES , REPRESENTED BY G . P . ALESSI , A MEMBER OF ITS LEGAL DEPARTMENT , ACTING AS AGENT , WITH AN ADDRESS FOR SERVICE IN LUXEMBOURG AT THE OFFICE OF O . MONTALTO , A MEMBER OF ITS LEGAL DEPARTMENT , JEAN MONNET BUILDING , KIRCHBERG ,

APPLICANT ,

V

GOVERNMENT OF THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC , IN THE PERSON OF ITS AGENT , A . SQUILLANTE , HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DIPLOMATIC LEGAL AFFAIRS , TREATIES AND LEGISLATIVE MATTERS , REPRESENTED AND ASSISTED BY P . G . FERRI , AVVOCATO DELLO STATO , WITH AN ADDRESS FOR SERVICE IN LUXEMBOURG AT THE ITALIAN EMBASSY ,

DEFENDANT ,

Subject of the case


APPLICATION FOR DECLARATIONS THAT THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC HAS FAILED TO FULFIL ITS OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE EEC TREATY BY FAILING TO IMPLEMENT WITHIN THE PRESCRIBED PERIOD FIVE DIRECTIVES CONCERNING THE ENVIRONMENT PROGRAMME ,

Grounds


1 BY APPLICATIONS LODGED AT THE COURT REGISTRY ON 16 AND 17 FEBRUARY AND ON 24 APRIL 1981 , THE COMMISSION BROUGHT BEFORE THE COURT , PURSUANT TO ARTICLE 169 OF THE EEC TREATY , FIVE ACTIONS FOR A DECLARATION THAT THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC HAD FAILED TO FULFIL ITS OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE TREATY BY FAILING TO ADOPT , WITHIN THE PRESCRIBED PERIODS , THE PROVISIONS NEEDED IN ORDER TO COMPLY WITH THE FOLLOWING DIRECTIVES :

( A ) COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/439/EEC OF 16 JUNE 1975 ON THE DISPOSAL OF WASTE OILS ( OFFICIAL JOURNAL L 194 , P . 31 );

( B)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/440/EEC OF 16 JUNE 1975 CONCERNING THE QUALITY REQUIRED OF SURFACE WATER INTENDED FOR THE ABSTRACTION OF DRINKING WATER IN THE MEMBER STATES ( OFFICIAL JOURNAL L 194 , P . 34 );

( C)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/442/EEC OF 15 JULY 1975 ON WASTE ( OFFICIAL JOURNAL L 194 , P . 47 );

( D)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 76/160/EEC OF 8 DECEMBER 1975 CONCERNING THE QUALITY OF BATHING WATER ( OFFICIAL JOURNAL L 31 , P . 1 );

( E)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 76/403/EEC OF 6 APRIL 1976 ON THE DISPOSAL OF POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYLS AND POLYCHLORINATED TERPHENYLS ( OFFICIAL JOURNAL L 108 , P . 41 ).

2 EACH DIRECTIVE LAID DOWN THAT THE MEMBER STATES WERE TO BRING INTO FORCE THE MEASURES NEEDED IN ORDER TO COMPLY WITH IT WITHIN A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS . THE PERIOD EXPIRED , IN THE CASE OF THE FIRST TWO DIRECTIVES ( 75/439/EEC AND 75/440/EEC ), ON 18 JUNE 1977 AND , IN THE CASE OF THE OTHERS ( 75/442/EEC , 76/160/EEC AND 76/403/EEC ), ON 18 JULY 1977 , 11 DECEMBER 1977 AND 9 APRIL 1978 RESPECTIVELY .

3 THE ITALIAN GOVERNMENT DOES NOT DISPUTE THAT IT HAS FAILED TO FULFIL THAT OBLIGATION . IT STATES THAT THE DELAY IN IMPLEMENTING THE DIRECTIVES STEMS FROM THE NEED TO HAVE RECOURSE TO THE ADOPTION OF LEGISLATION IN ORDER TO IMPLEMENT THE SAID DIRECTIVES , A PROCEDURE WHICH ENTAILS THE OBSERVANCE OF CERTAIN TIME-LIMITS DETERMINED BY THE REQUIREMENTS AND EVENTS INHERENT IN THE PARLIAMENTARY PROCESS . FACES WITH THOSE DIFFICULTIES , THE ITALIAN GOVERNMENT HAS ASKED PARLIAMENT FOR A DELEGATION OF LEGISLATIVE POWERS . ALTHOUGH THE DELEGATION HAS ALREADY BEEN APPROVED BY THE SENATE IT IS STILL BEING EXAMINED BY THE CHAMBER OF DEPUTIES .

4 THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES DO NOT EXPUNGE THE FAILURE TO FULFIL ITS OBLIGATIONS WITH WHICH THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC IS CHARGED . ACCORDING TO WELL-ESTABLISHED CASE-LAW , A MEMBER STATE MAY NOT PLEAD PROVISIONS , PRACTICES OR CIRCUMSTANCES EXISTING IN ITS INTERNAL LEGAL SYSTEM IN ORDER TO JUSTIFY A FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH OBLIGATIONS AND TIME-LIMITS RESULTING FROM COMMUNITY DIRECTIVES .

5 THEREFORE IT MUST BE HELD THAT BY FAILING TO ADOPT , WITHIN THE PRESCRIBED PERIOD , THE PROVISIONS NEEDED IN ORDER TO COMPLY WITH COUNCIL DIRECTIVES 75/439/EEC AND 75/440/EEC OF 16 JUNE 1975 , 75/442/EEC OF 15 JULY 1975 , 76/160/EEC OF 8 DECEMBER 1975 AND 76/403/EEC OF 6 APRIL 1976 , THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC HAS FAILED TO FULFIL ITS OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE TREATY .

Decision on costs


6 UNDER ARTICLE 69 ( 2 ) OF THE RULES OF PROCEDURE , THE UNSUCCESSFUL PARTY IS TO BE ORDERED TO PAY THE COSTS .

7 SINCE THE DEFENDANT HAS FAILED IN ITS SUBMISSIONS IT MUST BE ORDERED TO PAY THE COSTS .

Operative part


ON THOSE GROUNDS ,

THE COURT

HEREBY :

1 . DECLARES THAT BY FAILING TO ADOPT WITHIN THE PRESCRIBED PERIOD THE PROVISIONS NEEDED IN ORDER TO COMPLY WITH THE FOLLOWING DIRECTIVES :

( A ) COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/439/EEC OF 16 JUNE 1975 ON THE DISPOSAL OF WASTE OILS ;

( B)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/440/EEC OF 16 JUNE 1975 CONCERNING THE QUALITY REQUIRED OF SURFACE WATER INTENDED FOR THE ABSTRACTION OF DRINKING WATER IN THE MEMBER STATES ;

( C)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 75/442/EEC OF 15 JULY 1975 ON WASTE ;

( D)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 76/160/EEC OF 8 DECEMBER 1975 CONCERNING THE QUALITY OF BATHING WATER ;

( E)COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 76/403/EEC OF 6 APRIL 1976 ON THE DISPOSAL OF POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYLS AND POLYCHLORINATED TERPHENYLS ;

THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC HAS FAILED TO FULFIL ITS OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE TREATY ;

2.ORDERS THE DEFENDANT TO PAY THE COSTS .

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