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Eventech, the Selectivity of a Bus Lines Policy  ∙ C-518/13 ∙ Annotation  by Laura Parret and Greetje van Heezik

Annotation on the Judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (Second Chamber) of 14 January 2015 in Case C-518/13 Eventech v The Parking Adjudicator

Laura Parret, Greetje van Heezik


Keywords: Eventech, Seletivity, Buslines

The London bus lanes policy resulted in a remarkable and somewhat controversial preliminary ruling by the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) in January 2015. The most important criticism on this judgment is that the CJEU has stretched the State aid rules too far by suggesting that although no transfer of State resources is involved, the grant of a preferential right could nevertheless qualify as State aid. In reply to the preliminary questions the CJEU set out specific conditions for assessing whether the grant of a preferential right of access to bus lanes confers a selective advantage to Black Cabs. These conditions seem to go along the lines of what is customary in the context of free movement rules and the rules on the compensation for a public service obligation. They require amongst others the necessity and the proportionality of the preferential right and the determination of the criteria for the grant in advance in a transparent and non-discriminatory manner. Although the CJEU held with regard to the preferential right granted to Black Cabs that it did not seem to result in a selective advantage, the judgment raises various questions as to the general applicability of the reasoning of the CJEU.
Keywords: Selectivity; Public Service Obligation; Non-Discrimation; Proportionality.

Prof. dr. Laura Parret is professor at Utrecht University and Greetje van Heezik is lawyer at Houthoff. This annotation was published previously in C Buts and JL Buendía Sierra (eds), Milestones in State Aid Case Law (Berlin: Lexxion Publisher 2017), 680-692.


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