EC Treaty

EC Treaty in Europe

The E.U. Services Directive's relationship to the EC Treaty

The following is an examination of the directive's relationship to the ec treaty regarding the European Union Servicies Directive [1]: Like any piece of secondary legislation, the Services Directive needs to be seen in the context of primary law,

i.e. The Treaty establishing the European Community (EC Treaty) and notably the Internal Market freedoms. The Directive must be interpreted and implemented in this context.

It should also be clear that matters excluded from the scope of the Services Directive remain fully subject to the EC Treaty. Services excluded remain, of course, covered by the freedom of establishment and the freedom to provide services. National legislation regulating these service activities must be in conformity with Article 43 and 49 of the EC Treaty and the principles that the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has developed on the basis of the application of these articles have to be respected. It is for Member States themselves to ensure that their legislation is in conformity with the EC Treaty as interpreted by the ECJ. The Commission will continue to exercise its role as guardian of the EC Treaty and assist Member States in this task.



  1. Information on the directive's relationship to the ec treaty based on the EU Services Directive Handbook, UK Government

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