CJEU Case T-485/18 / Judgment

Compañía de Tranvías de la Coruña, SA v European Commission
Deciding body type
Court of Justice of the European Union
Deciding body
General Court (Third Chamber)
Decision date
ECLI (European case law identifier)
  • CJEU Case T-485/18 / Judgment

    Key facts of the case:

    Access to documents — Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 — Commission documents relating to the interpretation of a provision of EU law — Documents originating from a third party — Documents originating from a Member State — Regulation (EC) No 1370/2007 — Partial refusal to grant access — Total refusal to grant access — Obligation to state reasons — Exception relating to the protection of court proceedings — Overriding public interest.

    Outcome of the case:

    On those grounds, THE GENERAL COURT (Third Chamber) hereby:

    1. Annuls the decision of the European Commission of 7 June 2018 refusing, partially or totally, to grant Compañía de Tranvías de la Coruña, SA, access to documents relating to the Commission’s opinion sent to the French Republic concerning the fact that the metro lines contract is valid until 2039, in so far as it refused in part to grant access to the data other than personal data contained in the letter of 25 October 2010 sent by the Commission to the French authorities and in the letters of 27 July 2012 and 5 June 2013 sent by the Vice-President of the Commission, Mr Kallas, to the RATP;
    2. Dismisses the action as to the remainder;
    3. Orders the Commission to bear its own costs and to pay one fifth of the costs incurred by Compañía de Tranvías de la Coruña;
    4. Orders Compañía de Tranvías de la Coruña to bear four fifths of its own costs.
  • Paragraphs referring to EU Charter

    19) In that regard, it must be recalled that the obligation to state reasons is a general principle of EU law, enshrined in the second paragraph of Article 296 TFEU and in Article 41(1) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, under which any legal act adopted by the EU institutions must state the reasons on which it is based. That obligation means that the EU institutions must disclose clearly and unequivocally the reasoning of the author of the measure in such a way as to enable, on the one hand, interested parties to ascertain the reasons for the measure adopted in order to enable them to protect their rights, and, on the other hand, the court having jurisdiction to exercise its power of review (judgments of 2 April 1998, Commission v Sytraval and Brink’s France,C‑367/95 P, EU:C:1998:154, paragraph 63, and of 4 June 2013, ZZ, C‑300/11, EU:C:2013:363, paragraph 53; see also judgment of 5 December 2013, Commission v Edison, C‑446/11 P, not published, EU:C:2013:798, paragraph 21 and the case-law cited).