Graham Butler, A Question of Jurisdiction: Art. 267 TFEU Preliminary References of a CFSP Nature, European Forum. Insights, 1 April 2017
Abstract: Can the Court of Justice of the European Union assert jurisdiction and provide a national court with an interpretation of Union law in a case referred to it from a national court under an Art. 267 TFEU preliminary reference, when the subject matter is in regard to the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP)? This was one of a number of questions referred to the Court of Justice from the High Court of England and Wales in Rosneft (judgment of 28 March 2017, case C-72/15). In March 2017, the Court of Justice meeting in a Grand Chamber formation, answered this jurisdictional question in the affirmative. Given the significance of this judgment for the law of CFSP, and the Opinion of the Advocate General in 2016, this judgment was hotly anticipated given its implications for the “specific rules and procedures” that are applicable to the law of CFSP. As the Court of Justice continues in a line of case law to clarify its jurisdiction in CFSP, it is ultimately a question of constitutional importance for the EU’s external relations.