- does not agree with the arguments put forward by the Commission to justify this proposal. It does not consider the introduction of a minimum penalty within the EU to be justified, and feels that the expected "deterrent effect" of such a measure is debatable.
- would point out that the proposal for a directive actually establishes a comprehensive arsenal for enforcing legislation against counterfeiting; this would appear to go beyond that which is authorised under Article 83(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).
- questions the need for such an approach to law enforcement and doubts that it would be effective inasmuch as, even if a minimum penalty were set, sentencing would still be subject to differences of interpretation depending on the legal traditions of Member States and judges' discretion.
- The EESC finds it regrettable that the proposal for a directive does not take sufficient account – as required under Article 82(2) TFEU – of the differences between legal traditions and systems, not least in terms of its impact on individual rights and freedoms.
- The EESC feels that the intent behind the action is a key consideration that the proposal for a directive does not properly highlight in its recitals.
- feels that the draft directive needs to specify that the investigative tools used for organised crime should be used only for the most serious offences.
Other relevant EESC opinions:
- Corporate governance framework (CESE 1582/2011, INT/581)
- Corporate governance in financial institutions and remuneration policies (CESE 62/2011, INT/527)
- Company law/corporate governance (CESE 1592/2003, INT/186)
- on company law.
For more information please contact the INT Section Secretariat