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  • Author or Editor: Balázs Horváthy x
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In this essay is analysed the conceptual relation between the common commercial policy (CCP) of the European Union and the Hungarian foreign trade law, illustrating the dynamic extension of the CCP and the character of the competences in this field. Moreover the reader can get an insight into the so-called “rest competences”of the member states. In consequence of the nature and logic of the CCP was induced the mostly deregulatory modifications in the Hungarian legal order and the functional alteration of the foreign trade administration of Hungary. The author highlights this complex question consisting of the required modifications of the international conventional engagements and the harmonisation of Hungarian foreign trade material and procedural law in relation to the accession. He comes to conclusion that Hungarian accession to the EU might even be advantageous and it opens up a new prospect. Therefore the Hungarian foreign trade administration and diplomacy have to recognise the opportunity within the framework of the decision-making procedures of the Community as an initiative canalizing and enforcing the interests of the Hungarian producers and other market participants in all cases, when any kind of intervention is necessary in the relation of the third states.

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The category of ‘Union interest’ plays a specific role in EU common commercial policy. Its significance is especially substantial in the field of trade defence instruments. Even though trade defence instruments reflect on international trade distortions, their main objective is to protect European industries and other economic operators against the injurious practices of competitors from third countries, the imposition of restrictive trade measures might not only offer advantages to the affected EU industries, but also disadvantages to other actors in the European Union. Consequently, the Union interest test makes sure the other side of the coin is looked at and the European Union is prevented from imposing trade defence instruments, when the negative impacts on certain interested actors are clearly disproportionate to the positive impacts the trade defence measure might have on the protected EU industries. The current paper is focusing on the nature and character of the ‘Union interest’. The paper starts by defining some basic concepts regarding the EU interests in EU law, examines the nature of ‘Union interest’ in the trade defence procedures, and then attempts to reflect on the new trade enforcement regulation and the EU general trade interests.

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The essay attempts to give an overview on the cases relating to Hungary before European Court of Justice in the period between 2004–2007, which are classified into four categories. The first part of the article analyses eleven procedures concerning petitions for preliminary rulings, illustrating the bearings of the cases and pointing out the importance as well as consequences from the point of view of the Hungarian legal order. The essay refers to the fact that activity of Hungarian courts to apply preliminary ruling procedures is exceptionally high comparing with the other nine Member States acceded to EU in 2004 and in almost each cases concerned, the references were profoundly considered by the Hungarian court. The second category described in this paper includes cases, in which Hungarian individual persons participate as litigants (including the cases before Civil Service Tribunal). The experiences of these procedures on the basis of direct complaints indicate the conclusion that in several cases, the attorneys representing the plaintiff before ECJ involve not enough responsibilities to avoid bringing obviously inadmissible actions. In the third part of the paper the reader can get an insight into the cases in which the Republic of Hungary appears as litigant. Finally the fourth category embraces cases with indirect interest relating Hungary. These are referred but not deeply examined in the article.

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The current EU—US negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) may result in a comprehensive agreement which will be able to shape not only the traditional trade agenda but will cover a set of non-trade matters as well. Specifically, the environmental impacts as a matter of public concern are at the centre of attention of both the academia and the civil society. The proposed paper intends to analyse two aspects of the likely implications which could be triggered by the future transatlantic agreement. First, the policy level of the analysis is focusing on the question of how the contracting parties will integrate the environmental concerns into the agreement and how these concerns could be reconciled with the standard trade concerns and principles. Second, the TTIP could also have a direct impact on the environmental regulation; for this reason, the paper will also focus on the regulatory level. The paper concludes that a carefully planned agreement will not constrain the policy leeway of the EU in the field of the environmental protection, however, the EU negotiators have to pay very close attention to choosing the right models, methods and formulations in the future text of the agreement.

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