LUXEMBOURG (CN) – Spain has violated community law by requiring energy-sector acquisitions to be reviewed by its National Energy Commission, the EU Court of Justice ruled.
Spain’s authorization requirements are unlawful because they cause “a restriction on the free movement of capital,” Europe’s highest court ruled.
Restrictions on the movement of capital are not always unlawful, but in this case there was no justifiable interest related to public safety.
In particular, the level of restrictions required by the Spanish government is not “proportionate to the objective of security of energy supply.”
Also, the court ruled that Spain’s regulations confer “a discretion which is difficult for courts to review and entails a risk of discrimination.”