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CJEU Case C-66/18 / Judgment

European Commission v Hungary

Deciding Body type:
Court of Justice of the European Union
Deciding Body:
Court (Grand Chamber)
Type:
Decision
Decision date:
06/10/2020
ECLI:
ECLI:EU:C:2020:792

Key facts of the case:

Failure of a Member State to fulfil obligations – Admissibility – Jurisdiction of the Court – General Agreement on Trade in Services – Article XVI – Market access – Schedule of specific commitments – Requirement of authorisation – Article XX(2) – Article XVII – National treatment – Service provider having its seat in a third country – National legislation of a Member State imposing conditions for the supply of higher education services within its territory – Requirement relating to the conclusion of an international treaty with the State in which the provider has its seat – Requirement relating to the provision of education in the State in which the provider has its seat – Modification of conditions of competition to the benefit of national providers – Justification – Public order – Prevention of deceptive practices – Article 49 TFEU – Freedom of establishment – Directive 2006/123/EC – Services in the internal market – Article 16 – Article 56 TFEU – Freedom to provide services – Existence of a restriction – Justification – Overriding reason in the public interest – Public order – Prevention of deceptive practices – High quality of the education – Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union – Article 13 – Academic freedom – Article 14(3) – Freedom to found educational establishments – Article 16 – Freedom to conduct a business – Article 52(1).

Outcome of the case:

On those grounds, the Court (Grand Chamber) hereby:

  1. Declares that, by adopting the measure provided for in Article 76(1)(a) of Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény (Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), as amended by Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény módosításáról szóló 2017. évi XXV. törvény (Law No XXV of 2017 amending Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), which makes the exercise, in Hungary, of teaching activities leading to a qualification by foreign higher education institutions situated outside the European Economic Area subject to the condition that the Government of Hungary and the government of the State in which the institution concerned has its seat have agreed to be bound by an international treaty, Hungary has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article XVII of the General Agreement on Trade in Services, in Annex 1B to the Agreement establishing the World Trade Organisation, signed in Marrakesh and approved by Council Decision 94/800/EC of 22 December 1994 concerning the conclusion on behalf of the European Community, as regards matters within its competence, of the agreements reached in the Uruguay Round multilateral negotiations (1986-1994);
  2. Declares that, by adopting the measure provided for in Article 76(1)(b) of Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény (Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), as amended by Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény módosításáról szóló 2017. évi XXV. törvény (Law No XXV of 2017 amending Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), which makes the exercise, in Hungary, of the activities of foreign higher education institutions subject to the condition that they offer higher education in the State in which they have their seat, Hungary has failed, in so far as that provision applies to higher education institutions which have their seat in a third country member of the World Trade Organisation, to fulfil its obligations under Article XVII of the General Agreement on Trade in Services, in Annex 1B to the Agreement establishing the World Trade Organisation, signed in Marrakesh and approved by Decision 94/800, and, in so far as the provision applies to higher education institutions having their seat in another Member State, to fulfil its obligations under Article 49 TFEU and Article 16 of Directive 2006/123/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2006 on services in the internal market;
  3. Declares that, by adopting the measures provided for in Article 76(1)(a) and (b) of Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény (Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), as amended by Nemzeti felsőoktatásról szóló 2011. évi CCIV. törvény módosításáról szóló 2017. évi XXV. törvény (Law No XXV of 2017 amending Law No CCIV of 2011 on national higher education), Hungary has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 13, Article 14(3) and Article 16 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union;
  4. Orders Hungary to pay the costs.