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German Research Institute for Public Administration

New Comitology and Digital Agenda: The supranational implementation of EU (customs) law

The central research question of this project is what effects the rule-making procedure for Commission acts have on the implementation of EU law in practice. This question gains added relevance when approached from the perspective of the Member State's role in and prerogative for implementing EU law. This prerogative is also the applicable legal framework in EU customs law, even though in this field regulation at the EU level is particularly dense. The project analyses the mechanism, leading to the empowerment of the Commission.

Specifically, this research examines the effect that the use of either delegated or implementing rule-making procedures has on the interaction between the institutions and the Member States. The ways in which different actors, particularly the Member States, can influence the Commission has been changed by the Treaty of Lisbon. At the center of this is the interaction between the Commission and the legislating institutions when drafting legislation that delegates or confers powers according to Art. 290 or 291 TFEU, and thus also critical is the interpretation and application of these two articles as well as Regulation (EU) 182/2011.

The interrelation between the institutions and the Member States is further influenced by the purpose and substance of the Law of EU customs administration, especially the introduction of e-government. In this field of law, the Commission searches for unified technical standards for the digital administrative procedures in the Member States. As a consequence, the Commission also has a hand in national administrative procedures, possibly reducing the residual freedom of the Member States. This aspect has a complimentary function to the focus presented above.

This project has both dogmatic and political aims. To contribute to the dogmatic discussion, the project will deliver a systematic Analysis of legislating in the EU in the field of customs law with a view especially on the effect of the changes brought by the Lisbon Treaty. Additionally, the dogmatic consequences of the transition to e-government will be examined including the way in which the Commission shapes this law. This analysis makes it possible to draw conclusions about the interaction between legislative and executive rule-making, and particularly about the leeway for action possessed by the Member States.

In political terms, this identification and critical evaluation of mechanisms of Commission influence will contribute to the political and social debate on EU powers. The research will raise awareness of the Member State's capacity for action and influence, as well as enable more informed participation in the further development of this field of EU law.

Senior Fellow

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Weiß



Dr. Eljalill Tauschinsky


Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)