The Intersection of Law and Markets

Michelle P. Egan

in Constructing a European Market

Published in print June 2001 | ISBN: 9780199244058
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599132 | DOI:
 The Intersection of Law and Markets

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Focuses on the role of European case law in fostering an integrated market. Through a series of landmark cases, including Cassis De Dijon, Dassonville, and Keck, the European Court of Justice has supported trade and commerce in determining whether national legislation is protectionist or serves a legitimate function in promoting health, safety, and other public policy objectives. Analogies with the US are also discussed, particularly in promoting interstate commerce by addressing trade discrimination, and in developing legal principles to balance sovereign state powers with the need for integrated markets. The central argument is that a common framework of market rules has been pursued within a setting of well‐defined legal and judicial mechanisms, which have also provided mechanisms of enforcement and compliance with treaty goals. Of central importance is that legal reasoning shifted the focus of market integration from harmonization to mutual recognition as a key trade strategy to integrate markets. The role of law has been critical in sustaining a market economy, and case law shapes both states and markets, determining the constitutional limits to state intervention in markets and the level of government at which regulation is most appropriate and legitimate through legal mechanisms of non‐discrimination, balancing standards, and proportionality.

Keywords: European Court of Justice; European law; market integration; mutual recognition; non‐discrimination; proportionality; protectionism; USA

Chapter.  11104 words. 

Subjects: European Union

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