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La place du droit matériel dans le projet de constitution : Pourquoi une troisième partie ?


  • Jacques Ziller


The third part of the Constitution for Europe has been submitted to hard criticism. The content of this part however, is indispensable to a Constitution of the European Union as it is a consolidation of the legal bases and institutional details which are necessary to the functioning of the EU. As the Constitution is substituting the EC and EU treaties, detailed legal bases are indispensable in order to keep the acquis communautaire alive as well as to maintain the principle of direct applicability for the provisions of the Constitution. An examination of the possible alternatives in the light of political constraints shows that the Convention has chosen the optimal solution, i.e. consolidation in the form of a third part of the Constitution. A scrutiny of the content of the third part shows that the work of the legal experts from the Commission, the Council and the Parliament, has been far more innovative as it might seem at first glance. According to the two mandates they had received from the Praesidium, they reorganised the text in a way that puts the citizen in the front line - instead of the market. The adaptation of the contents of the EC and EU treaties shows as much continuity as change, both due to the adaptation of legal bases to the new system of acts and competences, and to additional legal bases. The ICG made some small further progress but only few steps backwards

Suggested Citation

  • Jacques Ziller, 2004. "La place du droit matériel dans le projet de constitution : Pourquoi une troisième partie ?," EUI-LAW Working Papers 15, European University Institute (EUI), Department of Law.
  • Handle: RePEc:erp:euilaw:p0015

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    constitutional change; acquis communautaire; competences; direct effect; European law; European Convention; founding Treaties; Treaty on European Union; treaty reform;

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