The rule of law in the Economic and Monetary Union
What role for the Court of Justice?
The European Union is founded on the rule of law, as stated in article 2 TEU. However, within the framework of EMU, the Treaty excludes the Court of Justice from playing a role when obligations are not respected. This has often led to rules being applied differently between Member States, which is very unfair and destroys mutual trust. The system would be much fairer if EMU was based on uniformly applied rules and where a role for the Court of Justice is foreseen. In other fields the Treaty foresees infringement proceedings against Member States for failure to fulfil an obligation (article 258 and 259 TFEU) and action for annulment against decisions of the Commission and the Council (article 263 TFEU). This role for the ECJ would not result in economic governance procedures being delayed, as these procedures do not have suspensive effects, they would however better protect citizen's rights. It is important to look at where the current legal framework can be improved in the long run, rather than shying away from future treaty change.