Towers of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) – Photo: wikipedia

EC refers Hungary to court regarding fixed prices for building materials

The European Commission announced on Friday that a decision had been made to refer Hungary to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) regarding rules introducing fixed prices for building materials, hefty penalty payments for non-respect of these fixed prices, and production obligations for building materials and raw materials for the construction sector.

The EC said that these national measures did not comply with the freedom of establishment, and the measure establishing fixed prices and penalty payments had not been notified under the EU Single Market Transparency Directive, under which member states have the obligation to notify draft technical regulations.

According to the statement, national measures introduce fixed prices for specific building materials, such as sand, gravel and cement, and an obligation for businesses to maintain production levels even if economically not sustainable.

It added that these measures did not appear justified or proportionate.

The EC initially sent a letter of formal notice in April 2022 followed by a reasoned opinion in January 2023. As the Commission considers that Hungary is still in breach of EU rules, it has decided to refer the case to the CJEU.

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