8.12.2014   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 439/10


Judgment of the Court (Sixth Chamber) of 23 October 2014 (request for a preliminary ruling from the Hoge Raad der Nederlanden — Netherlands) — Unitrading Ltd v Staatssecretaris van Financiën

(Case C-437/13) (1)

((Reference for a preliminary ruling - Community Customs Code - Recovery of import duties - Origin of goods - Means of proof - Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union - Article 47 - Rights of the defence - Right to effective judicial protection - Procedural autonomy of the Member States))

(2014/C 439/14)

Language of the case: Dutch

Referring court

Hoge Raad der Nederlanden

Parties to the main proceedings

Applicant: Unitrading Ltd

Defendant: Staatssecretaris van Financiën

Operative part of the judgment

1.

Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union must be interpreted as not precluding proof of origin of imported goods adduced by the customs authorities on the basis of national procedural rules resting on the results of an examination carried out by a third party, with regard to which that third party refuses to disclose further information either to the customs authorities or to the customs declarant, as a result of which it is made difficult or impossible to verify or disprove the correctness of the conclusions reached, provided that the principles of effectiveness and equivalence are upheld. It is for the national court to ascertain whether that is so in the main proceedings.

2.

In a situation such as that at issue in the main proceedings, and when the customs authorities cannot disclose further information in respect of the examination carried out, whether the customs authorities must grant the request of the party concerned that it conducts, at its own expense, an examination in the country declared as the country of origin and whether it matters that portions of the samples of the goods, to which the party concerned could have obtained access with a view to having an examination carried out by another laboratory, were still available for a limited period and, if so, whether the customs authorities must inform the party concerned that portions of the samples of the goods are still available and that it may request those samples for purposes of such an examination must be assessed on the basis of national procedural law.


(1)  OJ C 325, 9.11.2013.