German Wine Case Study

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Maurice is a fresh wine producer who sells his wine to other EU states. He was charged an inspection fee introduced by the UK government requiring the testing of the strengths of imported wines. He objected to the payment of the fee. He also sold some of his wine to a buyer in Denmark where he was charged for storage and inspection. He also imported his wine into Germany where the authorities charged his wine a tax that was ten percent higher than German wines of the same strength. The authorities justified this higher tax with the argument that it was necessary to protect small German wine producers.
The issues in this case are:
(i) Whether the inspection fee introduced by the UK to test the strength of imported wines has an equivalent
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Article 34 of the TFEU prohibits quantitative restrictions and all measures having an equivalent effect between member states. Article 36 provides that the provision in Article 34 shall not preclude restriction or prohibitions on imports and exports justified on grounds of protection on health and life of humans, public morality and public security. These restrictions shall not constitute a means of arbitrary discrimination or restriction on trade between member states.
A quantitative restriction on trade is a measure adopted by a state that treats products from other member states less favorably. This definition was set out in Dasonville. Benoit and Dassonvile challenged the legality of a law requiring a certificate in order to sell scotch whiskey. They claimed that there should be no quantitative restriction on trade or measures equivalent to this effect. The court held that the law requiring the certificate of origin contravened Article 34. It noted that a law that required proving the origin of product, which was difficult to obtain, discriminated on trade between member states if the product is in free circulation in a regular manner in another member state. It ruled that trading rules enacted by member states, which can hinder intra community trade, are to be considered as having an equivalent effect to quantitative restrictions. This decision follows that it is not necessary
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This is because the German law on cocoa content in chocolates and the type of product packaging are not harmonized with regulations in other member states and restricts the free movement of goods legally produced and marketed in the EU. Banning imports of Leone into the UK is discrimination to the trade between member states because the product is in free circulation in other EU countries. This ban hinders intra community trading and has an equivalent effect to a qualitative restriction. As held in Cassis de Dijon, a requirement that relates to the content of a product creates a measure that is equivalent to a quantitative restriction. The sugar content requirement in the UK regulation is restriction on the free movement of goods. A rule that might hinder access to the market produces an effect that is equivalent to a quantitative restriction on trade. Banning advertising campaigns in France does not unfairly aff3ec the marketing of products. This is because member states are not precluded from legislating against misleading advertisements as long as the regulations affect both domestic and imported

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