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Year 2014 x
Article

Making EU Legislation Clearer

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 3 2014
Keywords European Union, transparency, openness, clarity of legislation
Authors William Robinson
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article looks at the clarity of the legislation of the European Union (EU), in particular the clarity of the language used. It sketches out the basic EU rules on transparency and openness, past expressions of concern for clearer EU legislation, and the response of the institutions. Finally, it considers briefly some ways to make EU legislation clearer.


William Robinson
Associate Research Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, University of London, formerly coordinator in the Quality of Legislation Team of the European Commission Legal Service.
Article

Islamic Policy of Environmental Conservation

1,500 Years Old – Yet Thoroughly Modern

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2 2014
Keywords environment, waqf (endowment), khalifa (steward), God's equilibrium, Arab Spring
Authors Mohamed A. ‘Arafa
AbstractAuthor's information

    Any legal system plays a significant role in the principle underlying its legal doctrines. The legal system works in compliance with, or as a consequence of cultural order. In other words, any legal system is restricted to a certain environment and subject to cultural impact. Culture and law operate in conjunction. Politics and economy are, among others, the main disciplines affecting that legal system including environmental laws and natural resources. The present article attempts a comparative analysis of three different legal systems and their approaches to environmental law, contributing to the extensive literature on this area of law in numerous areas of the world such as the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. However, that literature appears to have had little coverage of the treatment of environmental law in Islamic law, one of the three main global legal systems together with common and civil law. The bold spread of Islamic tendency in the Middle East that followed the so-called “Arab Spring” assures major changes in the political and economic sphere, including environmental and natural resource levels. Environmental threats are very pressing all over the world, as the Earth needs to be protected through the adoption of universally applicable legal rules and the right to a healthy environment needs to be elaborated on in international instruments. It is very significant to understand Islam's overall view of the universe to comprehend the gap between Islamic theories and practices in Muslim countries. The universe is full of diversified creatures that aim to fulfill man's needs and prove God's greatness. The Qur'an states: “Have you not seen that God is glorified by all in the heavens and on earth, such as birds with wings outspread? Each knows its worship and glorification, and God is aware of what they do.”All creatures in the universe perform two specific roles: a religious role of evidencing God's perfection and presence and a social role of serving man and other creatures. The final outcome is the solidarity of the universe and the realization of its common good (benefit).
    Man's position in the universe is premised on two principles: the stewardship of man which means that man is not only a creature but also God's khalifa (steward) on earth; God is the only proprietor of earth; and man is a mere beneficiary, and man can exploit nature for his/her and other creatures’ benefit without depleting it and the principle of trust that all natural resources created by God are placed as a trust in man's hand and needs of coming generations must be taken into consideration by man. Islamic environmental law uses a “duty paradigm” in the sphere of the right to healthy environment, as human beings must not destroy, deplete, or unwisely use natural resources but have an obligation to develop and enhance natural resources. Any disturbance of God's equilibrium in the universe is a transgression and athm (sin) against the divine system. Last but by no means least, Islamic law regards man as a creature with elevated status. In Islamic environmental law, the human is not the owner of nature, but a mere beneficiary. Islamic environmental safety is based upon the principle of “use” without “abuse”. Environmental protection under the Islamic legal scheme does not differ from any modern environmental legal system.


Mohamed A. ‘Arafa
Adjunct Professor of Islamic Law at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law (USA); Assistant Professor of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice at Alexandria University Faculty of Law (Egypt). SJD, Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law (2013); LLM, University of Connecticut School of Law (2008); LLB, Alexandria University Faculty of Law (2006). Dr. ‘Arafa is a Visiting Professor of Business Law at the Arab Academy for Science, Technology, and Maritime Transport (‘College of Business Management’). Moreover, Professor ‘Arafa is a Domestic Public Mediator under Alternative Dispute Resolution, Indiana Rule ADR 25 (2012) and served as an Associate Trainee Attorney and Executive Attorney Assistant at ‘Arafa Law Firm (2007). Of course, all errors remain the author's.
Article

Access_open Company Tax Integration in the European Union during Economic Crisis – Why and How?

Journal Erasmus Law Review, Issue 1 2014
Keywords company tax harmonisation, EU law, Internal Market, taxation policies
Authors Anna Sting LL.M
AbstractAuthor's information

    Company tax integration in the EU is yet to be realised. This article first outlines the main benefits of company tax integration for the Economic and Monetary Union, and also discusses the main legal obstacles the EU Treaties pose for harmonisation of company tax. The main problem identified is the unanimity requirement in the legal basis of Article 115 TFEU. As this requirement is currently not feasible in the political climate of the debt crisis, this article assesses possible reasons for and ways to further fiscal integration. It considers Treaty change, enhanced cooperation, soft law approaches and also indirect harmonisation through the new system of economic governance. Eventually, a possible non-EU option is considered. However, this article recommends making use of the current EU law framework, such as soft law approaches and the system of the new economic governance to achieve a more subtle and less intrusive tax harmonisation, or instead a Treaty change that would legitimately enhance and further economic integration in the field of taxation.


Anna Sting LL.M
PhD Candidate at the Department of International and European Union Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam. The author would like to thank the organisers of the seminar on Company Tax Integration in the European Union, as well as the participants of the seminar of 11 June 2013 for their comments, as well as Prof. Fabian Amtenbrink for comments on an earlier draft of this paper.
Article

The Values of the European Union Legal Order

Constitutional Perspectives

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 1 2014
Keywords European Union, constitutional values, jurisprudence, rule of law, treaty objectives
Authors Timothy Moorhead
AbstractAuthor's information

    At the heart of the European Union legal order lie values directed collectively to the idea of European integration. As a body with significant governmental and lawmaking powers, the Union also presents itself as an institution based upon the rule of law. The Union ‘constitution’ therefore expresses both regulatory powers direct­ed towards European integration as well as rule of law principles whose scope of application is limited by the terms of the Treaties. In this article I consider how this distinctive amalgam of values operates as a constitution for the European Union, by comparison with domestic constitutional values within the Member States. I also consider how Union constitutional demands condition and inform the legal practices of the Court of Justice. Here I identify the interpretive effects of superior Union laws –‍ the core Treaty objectives as well as rule of law principles found within the General Principles ‍– as of particular significance in developing the legal influences of the entire Union project of integration.


Timothy Moorhead
Associate Lecturer, University of Kent.
Article

From a Soft Law Process to Hard Law Obligations

The Kimberley Process and Contemporary International Legislative Process

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 1 2014
Keywords Kimberley Process, soft law, international law, legislative process
Authors Martin-Joe Ezeudu
AbstractAuthor's information

    Ever since its creation and coming into force in 2003, the Kimberley Process has elicited a number of academic commentaries coming from different backgrounds. Legal scholars who have contributed to the commentaries, simply projected the regulatory regime as an international soft law without further analysis, based on an evaluation of the text of the agreement. This article in contrast, explores its practical effects and the manner of obligations that it imposes on its participant countries. It argues that although the regime may have been a soft law by classification, its obligations are hard and are no different from those of a conventional treaty. Those obligations enhance its juridical force, and are a factor by which the regime on its own tends to nullify the traditional criteria for distinction between hard and soft law in international jurisprudence, because it has elements of both.


Martin-Joe Ezeudu
PhD (Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Toronto, Canada); LLM (University of Birmingham, UK); LLB (Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria); Barrister & Solicitor, Nigeria; Solicitor, England & Wales. An articling student at the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Services Branch of the Ministry of Consumer Services), Toronto, Canada. I am grateful to Prof Ikechi Mgbeoji who introduced me to this line of research. My thanks to Mr Tom van der Meer for his helpful comments on an earlier draft of this article. All errors and omissions remain mine. Dedicated to the loving memory of my brother, Chukwuemeka Innocent Ezeudu ‍–‍ a true brother and companion.
Article

Implementation of Better Regulation Measures in the Internal Security Draft Legislation

The Case of Estonia

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 1 2014
Keywords better regulation, internal security policy, impact assessment, participation, Estonia
Authors Aare Kasemets and Annika Talmar-Pere
AbstractAuthor's information

    The article analyses the implementation of better regulation measures in the internal security (IS) strategies, draft legislation and administrative routines of the Estonian Ministry of the Interior. The article includes the results of five substudies: (a) the research problem emerged from the studies of the explanatory memoranda of draft laws 2004-2009 according to which the Ministry has some deficiencies in fulfilling the better regulation requirements; (b) mapping of better regulation and internal security policy concepts; (c) content analysis of Estonian IS strategy documents; (d) systematization of Estonian IS laws; and (e) sociological e-survey of officials. Theoretical framework integrates the concepts of institutional theory, discursive democracy, realistic legisprudence and the adaptive strategic management.The main conclusions drawn by the article are as follows: the analysis of the knowledge of draft legislation and the excessive amount of laws in the IS field gives evidence of a lack of systematic regulatory impact assessment (IA); the concept of better regulation is not integrated into IS policy documents (insufficient planning and budgeting of IA); and a sociological e-survey of the officials of the Ministry indicates discontent with the management of the IA of policies and draft legislation. According to institutional analysis, this shows readiness for changes in the context of risk society challenges and adaptation with budgetary contractions.


Aare Kasemets
Estonian Academy of Security Sciences. Email: aare.kasemets@sisekaitse.ee.

Annika Talmar-Pere
Estonian Academy of Security Sciences.
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