EU Flash: FTT, Mortgage credit, Alternative Dispute Resolution Directive (Weekly update 22-26/04/13)


UK government launches legal challenge against the FTT

The Government of the United Kingdom has launched legal proceedings against the enhanced cooperation procedure on the expected Financial Transaction Tax. This legal challenge has been decided upon due to the concerns the levy will negatively impact on member states that have chosen not to sign up to it, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said.

The U.K. submitted the challenge with the European Court of Justice, but the country remains hopeful it can reach agreement with the 11 countries without having to pursue the matter through the court.

“We are not against financial transactions tax in principle,” Mr. Osborne told reporters in Washington. “But we are concerned about the extra-territorial aspects of the commission’s proposal for the tax and I think that concern is shared by some other countries.”

Luxemburg already indicated that they will back the UK challenge to the FTT. "We are very sympathetic to the stance of the UK ... We will certainly bring our support to the case that has been started in the European Court of Justice," Frieden, the Luxemburg Finance Minister, said during a question and answer session at the City Week banking conference.

Council and European Parliament reach agreement on mortgage credit

On Monday 22 April, the Irish Presidency has reached a provisional agreement with the European Parliament on new European mortgage rules.

There is one issue which both Council and the European Parliament agreed to leave open. This is about the transposition, showing the correlation between the Directive and the provisions of the Member State legal text transposing the Directive.

The provisional agreement reached with the European Parliament will now have to be endorsed by EU member states and the European Parliament plenary, before being finalised. A revised indicative date for the European Parliament plenary sitting to consider the proposed Mortgage Credit Directive has been set for 11 June 2013.

Council adopts Alternative Dispute Resolution Directive

On Monday 22 April, the Council adopted the directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and the regulation on Online Dispute Resolution (ODR).

The new ADR Directive would apply to domestic and cross-border disputes submitted by consumers against traders in almost all areas of commercial activity across the EU, including online transactions. It would ensure that ADR schemes would be set up in all Member States, including those ones where ADR schemes do not exist today. As a general rule, the outcome of an ADR procedure should be made available within a period of three months from the date on which the ADR entity has received the complaint file

The new Regulation on online dispute resolution for consumer disputes would apply to out-of-court resolution procedures for contractual disputes between EU consumers and EU-based traders concerning online sales of goods or provisions of services. It would set up a European online dispute resolution platform (ODR), which would be a website offering consumers and traders a single point of entry for out of court resolution of certain disputes.

The ADR directive and the ODR regulation will enter into force 20 days after their publication in the EU Official Journal. The ADR and ODR texts should apply in all EU member states within 24 months of its entry into force (for ODR it shall apply 6 months after implementation deadline for the ADR Directive).

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