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The Legitimacy of EU Soft Law:

Still Nothing New or a Turn for The Worse in the Field of State Aid?

Verena Rošic Feguš


Keywords: legitimacy, EU soft law, soft law, rule of law, democratic safeguards, COVID-19 soft law

This article takes issue with the State aid soft law and its questionable legitimacy, transparency and compatibility with the rule of law. Although critics in this regard are almost ‘traditional’, the practice of adoption of EU soft law does not imply a conclusion that something is changing in this regard. What is more, the dimensions of the current pandemic seem to emphasize them. Recognising advantages of soft law and the existence of wide discretion of the European Commission this paper looks at the current state of affairs regarding EU soft law in EU State aid regime (and briefly also other EU policies), determines the gap between EU soft law and the rule of law and presupposes solutions that would improve EU soft law’s quality in the European integration.
Keywords: legitimacy; EU soft law; soft law; rule of law; democratic safeguards; COVID-19 soft law

Dr Verena Rošic Feguš is an Assistant Professor for European law at European Law Faculty, New University, Republic of Slovenia. The research for this article has benefited from the support of the Slovenian Research Agency within the framework of Research project no J5-1791 (A). ’An integral theory on the future of the European Union.’ For correspondence: <>.


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