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Phoebus Athanassiou

10 March 2006
LEGAL WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2
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Abstract
On 1 May 2004, 10 more countries acceded to the European Union (EU), bringing the total number of member States to 25, increasing the EU's population to over 450 million and, last but not least, nearly doubling the number of the official languages of the EU. The recent enlargement, a cornerstone in the continuing process of European integration, poses unprecedented challenges, also because of its linguistic implications for the EU and for the language regime applicable to the Community Institutions. In the case of the ECB, this challenge is all the more evident due to the very short deadlines within which some of its operational decisions need to be taken and implemented and the practical implications that their adoption in all the official languages of the EU would entail. This paper is divided in two Parts. Part I provides an overview of the rationale and of the legal basis underlying the EU's current language policy, outlining the language regime applicable to the Community Institutions and bodies and discusses exceptions and limitations to multilingualism associated with the particular situation of Member States with more than one official language or stemming from some recent case-law on the Institutions' language regime. Part II examines the issue of the name of the single currency and some of the reasons underlying the ECB's stance on proposed national variations in its spelling.
JEL Code
K : Law and Economics
20 October 2006
LEGAL WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 3
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Abstract
On 31 March 2004 the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament adopted the Public Sector Procurement Directive, with a national implementation deadline of 31 January 2006. In common with earlier Community public sector procurement legislation, the new Directive seeks to ensure that European public sector entities award contracts in an efficient, transparent and non-discriminatory manner, thereby contributing to the elimination of public procurement as a non-tariff barrier to the development of a genuine Single Market for goods and services throughout the EU. Although some of the Member State national central banks (NCBs) are listed in an Annex to the Public Sector Procurement Directive as
JEL Code
K : Law and Economics
30 July 2008
LEGAL WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 7
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Abstract
Adopted in response to the emergence of new prepaid electronic payment instruments and aspiring to establish a clear legal framework for the strengthening of the Single Market in payment services and the promotion of competition between issuing institutions, the E-money Directives have yet to achieve their objectives. Several years after the legislation's entry into force, relatively few licences have been issued, while the size of the e-money market continues to remain modest. What is more, the likelihood of an immediate increase in the volume of e-money issuance appears small, not only because of the still limited consumer interest in e-payment instruments but, also, on account of the perceived failings of the current regulatory regime. The purpose of this paper is to examine critically the state of play in this segment of the financial services industry and to inquire how the E-money Directives might be amended to bring about enhanced legal and operational certainty, facilitate the delivery of the potential benefits of e-money and contribute to the development of e-commerce within the EU. Our discussion of the regulatory concerns raised by the E-money Directives and our inquiry into the most appropriate means of resolving these will be preceded by an examination of the e-money market's expansion hitherto and its future growth prospects within the EU.
JEL Code
K : Law and Economics
18 December 2009
LEGAL WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 10
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Abstract
This paper examines the issues of secession and expulsion from the European Union (EU) and Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). It concludes that negotiated withdrawal from the EU would not be legally impossible even prior to the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, and that unilateral withdrawal would undoubtedly be legally controversial; that, while permissible, a recently enacted exit clause is, prima facie, not in harmony with the rationale of the European unification project and is otherwise problematic, mainly from a legal perspective; that a Member State's exit from EMU, without a parallel withdrawal from the EU, would be legally inconceivable; and that, while perhaps feasible through indirect means, a Member State's expulsion from the EU or EMU, would be legally next to impossible. This paper concludes with a reminder that while, institutionally, a Member State's membership of the euro area would not survive the discontinuation of its membership of the EU the same need not be true of the former Member State's use of the euro.
JEL Code
K : Law and Economics
18 August 2011
LEGAL WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 12
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Abstract
Financial sector supervisors' accountability is widely accepted as a sine qua non condition of good governance and as a guarantor of supervisory independence. An arsenal of accountability inspired control instruments aims to ensure that supervisors are accountable to the legislature, the executive, stakeholders and, last but not least, the judiciary. While the general right to damages for losses arising from civil wrongs is well established, liability for faulty supervisory acts or omissions is, in many respects, limited in scope. This paper examines the conceptual underpinnings of financial sector supervisors' liability and the current legal situation on supervisory liability in the European Union, under both national and Union law. It also inquires into an aspect of the debate that has attracted less attention than it deserves, but which is likely to take on greater importance as the structure of financial supervision undergoes reforms, both at the European Union level and in the Member States: the specificity of the Member States' national central banks as banking supervisors and, in particular, the tension between their independence and their potential third party liability for damages for supervisory faults.
JEL Code
K : Law and Economics
17 May 2019
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 223
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Abstract
This paper summarises the outcomes of the analysis of the ECB Crypto-Assets Task Force. First, it proposes a characterisation of crypto-assets in the absence of a common definition and as a basis for the consistent analysis of this phenomenon. Second, it analyses recent developments in the crypto-assets market and unfolding links with financial markets and the economy. Finally, it assesses the potential impact of crypto-assets on monetary policy, payments and market infrastructures, and financial stability. The analysis shows that, in the current market, crypto-assets’ risks or potential implications are limited and/or manageable on the basis of the existing regulatory and oversight frameworks. However, this assessment is subject to change and should not prevent the ECB from continuing to monitor crypto-assets, raise awareness and develop preparedness.
JEL Code
E42 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Monetary Systems, Standards, Regimes, Government and the Monetary System, Payment Systems
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G23 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Non-bank Financial Institutions, Financial Instruments, Institutional Investors
O33 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Technological Change, Research and Development, Intellectual Property Rights→Technological Change: Choices and Consequences, Diffusion Processes