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Negotiating the Foundations of European Law, 1950–57: The Legal History of the Treaties of Paris and Rome

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 June 2012

ANNE BOERGER-DE SMEDT*
Affiliation:
Campus Saint-Jean, University of Alberta, 8406, rue Marie-Anne-Gaboury (91 St), Edmonton, Alberta T6C 4G9, Canada; aboerger@ualberta.ca

Abstract

This article analyses how the seeds for the development of European law from the 1960s onwards were sown in the foundational treaties. It argues that despite the fact that both European treaties embodied a conscious choice by the majority of the governments not to establish the European Communities on a constitutional basis, a small number of politicians and jurists managed nonetheless to insert the potential for the constitutional practice. Following a chronological account of each set of negotiations, the article untangles the complex ideas and decisions, which crafted both the legal shape of the treaties and the jurisdiction of the new European Court of Justice.

Les négotiations sur les fondations du droit européen: l'histoire juridique des traités de paris et de rome

L'article analyse la façon dont les bases pour le développement du droit européen ont originellement été implantées dans les traités fondateurs. Il fait valoir que, malgré un choix délibéré de la majorité des gouvernements de ne pas établir les communautés européennes sur une base constitutionnelle, un nombre réduit de politiciens et de juristes ont néanmoins réussi à insérer dans les traités de Paris et de Rome le potentiel d'une pratique constitutionnelle. En suivant la trame chronologique des négociations, l'article démêle les idées et les décisions complexes qui ont façonné la nature juridique de chaque traité et la Cour de Justice Européenne.

Aushandeln der grundfesten des europäischen rechts, 1950–1957: die rechtsgeschichte der pariser und der römischen verträge

Dieser Artikel analysiert, wie in den Gründungsverträgen der Boden für die Entwicklung des europäischen Rechts ab den 1960er Jahren bereitet wurde. Er argumentiert, obwohl beide europäischen Vertragswerke eine bewusste Entscheidung der Mehrheit der Regierungen verkörperten, die Europäische Gemeinschaft nicht auf eine Verfassungsbasis zu stellen, schaffte es eine kleine Zahl von Politikern und Juristen trotzdem, das Potenzial für die Verfassungspraxis einzuführen. Der Artikel wirft in einer chronologischen Darstellung jedes Verhandlungsabschnitts ein Schlaglicht auf die komplexen Gedanken und Entscheidungen, die sowohl die rechtliche Gestalt der Verträge als auch die Gerichtsgewalt des neuen Europäischen Gerichtshofs prägten.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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References

1 Thus, in all the cases of doctrinal importance before the ECJ during the 1960s the member states continually opposed the ECJ's establishment of what this special issue has conceptualised as ‘constitutional practice’. From a quotation of Marie-France Buffet-Tchakoff (1984) in Alter, Karen, Establishing the Supremacy of European Law: The Making of an International Rule of Law in Europe (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), 216Google Scholar.

2 Cohen, Antonin, ‘Constitutionalism without Constitution: Transnational Elites between Political Mobilization and Legal Expertise in the Making of a Constitution for Europe (1940s–1960s)’, Law and Social Inquiry, 32, 1 (2007), 109135CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

3 Bebr, Gerhard, Judicial Control of the European Communities (London: Stevens and Sons Limited, 1962), 2627Google Scholar.

4 These included Article 189 EEC which stated that regulations had direct effect in the national legal orders, the demand for uniformity of interpretation and the mechanism of preliminary references to ensure this (Article 177) and finally, the establishment of an assembly. Aff. 26/62 N. V. Algemene Transport – en Expeditie Onderneming van Gend & Loos v. Nederlandse Administratie der Belastingen (1963), Recueil 1963, p. 0003 and Aff. 6/64 Flaminio Costa v. ENEL (1964), Recueil 1964, p. 1194.

5 The focus here will, for reasons of space, be restricted to in-depth analyses of the negotiations of the treaties establishing the ECSC and the EEC, leaving the less significant Euratom Treaty aside for future scrutiny.

6 Smedt, Anne Boerger-De, ‘La Cour de Justice dans les négociations du traité de Paris’, Journal of European Integration History, 2 (2008), 734CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

7 Schulze, Reiner and Hoeren, Thomas, eds, Dokumente zum Europäischen Recht. Band 2: Justiz (bis 1957) (Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg, New York, 2000), 23–4CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

8 Interview of Etienne Hirsch by Antoine Marès, 2 July 1980. Fondation Jean Monnet pour l'Europe (FJM).

9 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 23–4.

10 ‘Plan Schuman. Considérations du Département des Affaires Économiques’. Archives Nationales de Luxembourg, 11347 (ANL). Also ‘Conversations sur le Plan Schuman. [. . .]. 3 juillet 1950 (PS/CR5)’. FJM, AMG 3/3/17.

11 ‘Conversations sur le Plan Schuman [. . .]. 3 juillet 1950 (PS/CR5). FJM, AMG 3/3/17 and ‘Conversations sur le Plan Schuman. [. . .] 5 juillet 1950’. FJM, AMG 4/1/1.

12 As Hallstein later explained, ‘the Schuman-Plan in its constitutional structure intentionally anticipates the institutions of the future all-in Federation of Europe’ (Walter Hallstein, ‘The Schuman-Plan and the Integration of Europe’, Lecture at Georgetown University, 12 March 1952. FJM, AMG 56/2/43).

13 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 55. Also ‘Het Plan Schuman’, 24 July 1950. Archieven van het ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken I, 996.1 EGKS, 40 (AMBZ).

14 ‘Réunion du Comité des Chefs de délégation sur les questions institutionnelles, [. . .]12 juillet 1950’ (PS/G1/CR2). FJM, AMG 4/1/2.

15 ‘Réunion du Comité des Chefs de délégation sur les questions institutionnelles, [. . .] 21 juillet 1950’ (PS/G1/CR4). FJM, AMG 4/1/4.

16 Mosler offered a detailed account of how the ECSC's institutions were shaped during the Paris negotiations in Mosler, Herman ‘Die Entstehung des Modells supranationaler und gewaltenteilender Staatenverbindungen in den Verhandlungen über den Schuman-Plan’, in von Caemmerer, E., Schlochauer, H.-J., Steindorff, E., eds, Probleme des Europäischen Rechts. Festschrift für Walter Hallstein zu seinem 65. Geburtstag (Frankfurt/Main: Vittoria Klostermann, 1966), 355–86Google Scholar.

17 ‘Réunion du Comité des Chefs de Délégation, [. . .] 4 août 1950’ (PS/G1/CR6). FJM, AMG 4/1/6, and ‘Mémorandum sur les institutions’ (annexe I du Rapport sur les travaux poursuivis à Paris par les délégations des 6 pays du 20 juin au 10 août 1950). ANL, 11384.

18 This distinction was established in September by the jurists. Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 55.

19 ‘Proposition de la délégation néerlandaise. Directives du Conseil spécial des Ministres à la Haute Autorité’, 11 Sept. 1950. Politisches Archiv des Auswärtigen Amtes, Abt.2, SFSP, dos. 103 (PAAA).

20 Bebr, Judicial Control, 10–11.

21 ‘Note sur les résultats des travaux du Comité des juristes à la date du 25 juillet 1950’. FJM, AMG 4/1/5bis.

22 Challenging the expediency of a decision meant that a member state, although it recognised the HA had not abused its power, claimed the HA's decision would have serious socio-economic consequences and therefore requested that the judges also assess in their ruling the economic facts and circumstances in which the HA acted.

23 See, e.g., ‘Observations de la délégation des Pays-Bas (M. Riphagen) sur l'avant-projet de mémorandum’, 1 Aug. 1950. FJM, AMG 5/7/4 and Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 44.

24 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 45–6.

25 Part of the inspiration behind this revolutionary trait in international law was the Mixed Arbitral Tribunals established by the Treaties of Peace in 1919, before which private individuals could appear as parties (F. Muûls ‘Plan Schuman. Note pour le C.M.C.E’, 24 Aug. 1950. Archives du ministère belge des Affaires étrangères, Dos.gén. CECA 5216 (AMAE/B) and Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 46). Hallstein was indeed familiar with the Treaty of Versailles since he wrote his juridical dissertation on its provisions with regard to insurance policies (Walter Hallstein, Der Lebensversicherungsvertrag im Versailler Vertrag, Marburg in Hessen: N. G. Elwert, 1926). On the Mixed Arbitral Tribunals, see De Auer, Paul, ‘The Competency of Mixed Arbitral Tribunals’, Transactions of the Grotius Society, 13 (1927), xviixxxGoogle Scholar.

26 Ophüls, ‘Premières observations de la délégation allemande’, 2 Aug. 1950. Archives Nationales de France, Commissariat général du Plan, 81 AJ 154 (ANF). Also Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 44–7.

27 David Bruce to States Department, 23 June 1950. National Archives and Records Administration, RG 466 McCloy Gen. Records (1949–1952) 2 and Van Helmont, ‘Note sur l'entretien de M. Monnet avec M. Blaisse le 18 septembre 1950’. FJM, AMG 6/5/7.

28 ‘Premier avant projet. Mémorandum sur les institutions de la proposition du 9 mai’, 1 Aug. 1950. ANL 11349. For Reuter's views on the ‘revolutionnary’ direct relation between the individuals and the ECSC's institutions, see Reuter, Paul, La Communauté européenne du charbon et de l'acier (Paris: Librairie générale du droit et de jurisprudence, 1953), 140Google Scholar.

29 ‘Sitzung des Sachverständigenausschusses für den Schuman-Plan dem 24 August 1950’. PAAA/Abt.2, SFSP, 4. and ‘Notizen’, Hallstein to von Brentano, 8 Aug. 1950. PAAA/Abt.2, SFSP, 53.

30 Wilson, Jérôme, ‘Aux origines de l'ordre juridique communautaire’, in Franck, C. and Boldrini, S., eds, Une Constitution pour un projet et des valeurs (Brussels: Bruylant, 2004), 23–7Google Scholar.

31 Monnet to Mayer, 1 Sept. 1950. ANF, 363 AP 17.

32 Note by Mayer, 25 Aug. 1950. ANF, 363 AP 17.

33 Interview of Maurice Lagrange by Antoine Marès, 23 Sept. 1980. FJM.

34 F. Muûls, ‘Note concernant le projet de traité relatif au charbon et à l'acier’, 16 Nov. 1950. AMAE/B, Dos.gén. CECA 5216. Also Riphagen to Kohnstamm, 13 Nov. 1950. AMBZ, I, 913–1 EGKS, 38; Calmes ‘Voies de recours’. ANL, 11372 and ‘Compte-rendu de la réunion du 10 novembre 1950’. AMAE/B, Dos.gén. CECA 5216.

35 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 80–2. It is not clear whether this document was circulated among the negotiating parties. For the two other counter-proposals, see ibid., 83–9.

36 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 92.

37 For a complete analysis of the Court's functions, see, e.g., Feld, Werner, The Court of the European Communities: New Dimension in International Adjudication (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1966), 3486Google Scholar.

38 Paul Reuter, ‘Quelques aspects institutionnels du Plan Schuman’, Revue de droit public et de la science politique en France et à l'étranger (1951), 120 and 124.

39 ‘Note sur la compétence de la Cour de Justice (Article 33 du projet de Traité)’. 15 Jan. 1951. FJM, AMG 11/3/1.

40 ‘Protokoll über die Sitzung des Koorinierungsausschusses für den Schuman-Plan am Donnerstag, den 7. Dezember 50’. PAAA, Abt. 2, Sekretariat. . ., 5.

41 Companies could not bring to the European Court another enterprise or a member state for violations of the treaty. Furthermore they could only sue against individual decisions concerning them or against general decisions involving a misuse of power affecting them: Scheingold, , The Rule of Law in European Integration (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1965), 41Google Scholar.

42 No document allows us to pinpoint when that decision was taken. The legal experts debated the issue on 7 Aug. 1950; unable to settle it, they referred it to the heads of delegation: Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 46.

43 Preda, Daniela, Storia di una speranza. La battaglia per la CED e la Federazione europea (Milan: Jaca, 1990)Google Scholar and Griffiths, Richard T., Europe's First Constitution. The European Political Community, 1952–1954 (London: The Federal Trust, 2000)Google Scholar.

44 Poidevin, Raymond and Dirk, Spierenburg, Histoire de la Haute Autorité de la Communauté Européenne du Charbon et de l'Acier. Une expérience supranationale (Brussels: Bruylant, 1993)Google Scholar.

45 ‘Documents de travail relatifs aux aspects institutionnels’ (n°313), 7 Oct. 1955. ANL, 7708B.

46 ‘Document de travail n°6. Institutions’, 8 Nov. 1955 and ‘Annexe au document n°6 sur les institutions’, 13 Feb. 1956. ANL 7695.

47 Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 354–6.

48 ‘Annexe au document n°6 sur les institutions’, 13 Feb. 1956. ANL 7695.

49 See e.g. ‘Weekbericht n°7. Periode 10 t/m 13 September 1956’. AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6351.

50 ‘Déclaration de Maurice Faure faite lors de la réunion des chefs de délégation de la Conférence intergouvernementale du 26 juillet 1956’, 12 Oct.1956, MAE 415/56. ANL, 7714.

51 Schaus to Bech, 7 Sept. 1956. ANL, 7719.

52 Note from G. Vedel, 11 Sept. 1956. FJM, ARM 16/10/5. Ludwig Erhard, the German minister of economics expressed a similar reluctance earlier in the negotiations. Küsters, Hanns-Jürgen, ‘Walter Hallstein and the Negotiations on the Treaties of Rome 1955–1957’, in Loth, Wilfried, Wallace, William and Wessels, Wolfgang, eds., Walter Hallstein: The Forgotten European? (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1998), 68–9Google Scholar. See also Palayret, Jean-Marie, ‘Les décideurs français et allemands face aux questions institutionnelles dans la négociation des traités de Rome 1955–1957’ in Bitsch, Marie-Thérèse, ed., Le couple France-Allemagne et les institutions européennes (Brussels: Bruylant, 2001), 105–50Google Scholar.

53 Küsters, Hanns-Jürgen, Fondements de la Communauté économique européenne (Luxembourg and Brussels: Labor, 1990), 190–1Google Scholar.

54 See, e.g., Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 372.

55 For the first phase of the negotiation, see, e.g., Note from Riphagen to Verrijn Stuart, 5 March 1956. AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6351 or ‘Verslag van de besprekingen in de kring der Hoofden van Delegatie ter Brusselse integratie – Conferentie op 7–9 Maart 1956’, 10 March 1956. AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6351. For the second phase, Pour une Communauté Politique Européenne: Travaux préparatoires (1955–1957) (Brussels: Bibliothèque de la Fondation Paul-Henri Spaak, 1987), 61–8 and 82 (Travaux préparatoires).

56 von Stempel, ‘Aufzeichnung. Betr.: Brüsseler Integrationskonferenz; hier: Institutionen’, 10 Nov. 1956. PAAA, Abt.2, 225–30–04, 929.

57 ‘Note pour le ministre des Affaires étrangères et le ministre des Affaires économiques’, 13 Nov. 1956. AMBZ, II, 913.000, 6328 and ‘De Instituten in de tweede phase van de Verdragsbesprekingen van de Conferentie te Brussel’ (12 Nov. 1956). AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6328.

58 See, e.g., ‘Projet du document de travail sur l'établissement d'un marché commun présenté par la délégation française’, 1ère rédaction, (May 1956), Archives du Ministère des Affaires étrangères de France, Série DE-CE, 612 and ‘Weekbericht n°7. Periode 10 t/m 13 September 1956’. AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6351.

59 ‘Comentaar op het Brusselse Rapport over de gemeenschappelijk Markt’, sd. AMBZ, II, 913–100, 6327.

60 See, e.g., Lagrange, Maurice, ‘Le pouvoir de décision dans les Communautés européennes: théorie et réalité’, Revue Trimestrielle de Droit Européen, 1 (1967), 129Google Scholar.

61 Pescatore, Pierre, ‘Les travaux du “Groupe juridique” dans la négociation des Traités de Rome’, Studia Diplomatica, XXXIV (1981), 158–78Google Scholar, here 164.

62 This is confirmed in the interview of Riphagen by Duchêne, 18 May 1989, FJM, and in the interview of Gaudet by G. Bossuat, 10 Jan. 1998. European University Institute Interview 603, 13 (EUI INT).

63 Faure allegedly advised Vedel not to pay too much attention to the somewhat restrictive comments made by the Quai d'Orsay about the Court. G. Vedel in 40 ans des Traités de Rome ou la capacité des Traités d'assurer les avancées de la construction européenne, Actes du colloque de Rome 26–27 March 1997 (Brussels: Bruylant, 1999), 48.

64 Interview of Michel Gaudet by G. Bossuat, 20 Jan.1998, p. 3–4. IUE INT 603. Interview of Gaudet by Karen Alter, 9 June 1994 (I wish here to thank Karen Alter for sharing this exclusive interview) and Mühlenhöver, ‘Aufzeichnung. [. . .] Hier: Gerichtshof’, 17 Dec. 1956. PAAA. Abt.2, 225–30–04, 933.

65 Mühlenhöver, ‘Aufzeichnung. [. . .] Hier: Gerichtshof’, 17 Dec. 1956. PAAA. Abt.2, 225–30–04, 933.

66 Draft of 13 Dec. 1956 in Schulze and Hoeren, Dokumente, 373.

67 Mühlenhöver, ‘Aufzeichnung. [. . .]. Hier: Gerichtshof’, 17 Dec. 1956. PAAA. Abt.2, 225–30–04, 933. See also Michel Gaudet, ‘La coopération judiciaire, instrument d'édification de l'ordre juridique communautaire’, in von Caemmerer, Schlochauer, and Steindorff, eds., Probleme des Europäischen Rechts, 202–25.

68 Rasmussen, Morten, ‘Constructing and Deconstructing “Constitutional” European Law: Some Reflections on How to Study the History of European Law’, in Koch, Henning, Hagel-Sørensen, Karsten, Haltern, Ulrich and Weiler, Joseph, eds., Europe: The New Legal Realism (DJØF Publishing: Århus, 2010), 642–3Google Scholar.

69 Pescatore, Pierre, ‘Rôle et chance du droit et des juges dans la construction de l'Europe’, Revue internationale de droit comparé, 26, 1 (1974), 8CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

70 Scheingold, The Rule of Law, 9–40.

71 Reuter to Stein, ‘Observations’, Dec. 1959. Stein Papers, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan, 12.

73 This procedure was suggested by Uri in Feb. 1956 and was presented under the paragraph outlining the powers of the Commission (‘Annexe au document n°6 sur les institutions’, 13 Feb. 1956. ANL 7695).

74 This was a Dutch demand. ‘Note présentée par la délégation néerlandaise’, 11 Sept. 195l, MAE 269/56, in Travaux préparatoires, 64.

75 This contradicts the hypothesis by Joseph Weiler that the founding states may have considered individual rights which national courts could protect. Weiler, Joseph H. H., ‘Rewriting Van Gend en Loos’, in Wiklund, Ola, ed., Judicial Discretion in European Perspective (London: Kluwer Law International, 2003) 154 and 158Google Scholar.

76 Case 26/62 Van Gend en Loos v. Nederlandse Administratie der Belastingen [1963] European Court Report 1.

77 Article 189 was drafted by the Groupe de rédaction mid-January 1957, but the idea of binding and directly applicable regulations seems to have been suggested by the group of experts working on the common market. Van Tichelen, Joseph, ‘Souvenirs de la négociation du Traité de Rome’, Studia Diplomatica, XXXIV (1981), 342Google Scholar. Also Travaux préparatoires, 150–3.

78 Rasmussen, Morten, ‘From Costa v ENEL to the Treaties of Rome: A Brief History of a Legal Revolution’, in Maduro, Miguel and Azoulai, Loïc, eds., The Past and Future of EU Law: The Classics of EU Law Revisited on the 50th Anniversary of the Rome Treaty (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2010), 83Google Scholar.

79 Rapport juridique de la Commission spéciale de la Chambre des députés (Adrien van Kauvenbergh). Bulletin de Documentation du Service Information et Presse, Luxembourg, 12 (Dec. 1957), 148.

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