Italy quizzed over water directive

Italy his found itself in the dock over failure to write the Water Framework Directive onto its statute books.

Case C-85/05, Commission v Italy

The ECJ gave judgement in the case of Commission v Italy (Case C-85/05) on 12 January 2006. The case concerned an application by the Commission to the Court, seeking a declaration that by failing to adopt the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with the Water Framework Directive (Directive 2000/60/EC) or, in any event, by failing to communicate those provisions to the Commission, the Italian Republic has failed to fulfil its obligations under Article 24(1) of that directive.

The Water Framework Directive was due to have been transposed by Member States by 22 December 2003. However, following the issue of a Reasoned Opinion to the Italian Government on 9 July 2004 to which no response was received, the Commission proceeded to take the case to the ECJ as it had still not been notified of the necessary transposition measures. Before the Court, the Italian Government sought to argue that Italian Law No. 308 of 15 December 2004 transposed the Directive. However as this had not been adopted on expiry of the period provided for within the Reasoned Opinion, the Court held Italy to be in breach of the Directive. This follows the jurisprudence of the Court, by which it has been established that the Court can only take into account the situation within the Member State up to the expiry of the period provided for in the Reasoned Opinion.

The full text of the judgement is available in French at the following link:

Please click here

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