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European Commission - Press release

Health and Safety: Commission refers LUXEMBOURG to the Court of Justice of the EU over failure to transpose Packaging & Labelling Directive into national law

Brussels, 22 July 2016

Health and Safety: Commission refers LUXEMBOURG to the Court of Justice of the EU over failure to transpose Packaging & Labelling Directive into national law

The European Commission is referring Luxembourg to the Court of Justice of the EU over the failure to notify the transposition of the Directive on classification, labelling and packaging (CLP) of substances and mixtures (Directive 2014/27/EU) into its national legislation, more than one year after its transposition deadline.

For many years, internal market directives have required that suppliers of chemical substances and mixtures identify the hazards of the chemical substances using a standardised set of classification criteria, package the chemical safely, and communicate information about hazards to their customers through labels and other documents such as safety data sheets. The CLP Directive has replaced these directives, aligning them with the CLP Regulation (Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008). This CLP Regulation is an EU regulation which entered into force on 20 January 2009 and aligns the Union s   ystem of classification, labelling and packaging of chemical substances and mixtures to the United Nations Globally Harmonised System (GHS).

Member States' laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with the CLP Directive had to enter into force by 1 June 2015 and the Commission had to be informed immediately. Although the Commission sent a letter of formal notice and two Reasoned Opinions asking Luxembourg to clarify the situation, the country has not yet transposed the Directive. Therefore, on the basis of the procedure set out in Article 260(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), the Commission will request the Court of Justice to impose a daily penalty payment of €8,710 on Luxembourg until the Directive is fully transposed into national legislation. 

Background

The Commission addressed a letter of formal notice on 22 July 2015, followed by a reasoned opinion on 11 December 2015. Luxembourg national authorities sent a draft law and 3 draft regulations and informed that those had been approved at the "Conseil de Gouvernement" and ready to undergo the legislative procedure, but did not confirm adoption of these measures. Therefore, an additional reasoned opinion was addressed on 26 February 2016. In April, national authorities informed the Commission that the adoption process was blocked by the "Conseil d'Etat". The Conseil d'Etat considered that the fact that a higher legal act referred, for certain of its definitions, to lower legislation (regulations adopted by the government), was contrary to the principle of the hierarchy of norms. The national authorities informed that the administration in charge was considering other options in order to reach an acceptable solution. To date, no legislation has been formally notified, leading the Commission to conclude that the Directive is, at present, not transposed into the national law. As a consequence, the Commission decided to refer Luxembourg to the Court of Justice of the EU.

For more information:

- On the key decisions of the July infringements package, please refer to the full MEMO/16/2490.

- On the general infringement procedure, see MEMO/12/12(an infograph).

- On EU infringement procedure.

 

 

IP/16/2599

Press contacts:

General public inquiries: Europe Direct by phone 00 800 67 89 10 11 or by email


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