The Government published its response on 13 November 2012 to the European Commission’s proposed Regulation for a Common European Sales Law. From the response:
“The Government concludes that there are elements of CESL which do not provide sufficient clarity or legal certainty. The instrument is:
- too complex,
- incomplete in parts (some significant aspects of a contractual relationship are not covered),
- unworkable for certain types of contract,
- uncertain, both as to whether a contract is valid and as to the certainty of its terms; and
- unclear on its applicability, in particular how its provisions interact with other EU law.
The Government therefore concludes that it does not feel able to support the CESL proposal. The UK has, in the past, supported an ambitious approach to the harmonisation of consumer law to support the retail single market. We continue to think that this is more likely to deliver the Commission’s aims than a new, voluntary contract law. We would therefore encourage the Commission to carry out a careful and specific review of the barriers to cross-border trade, considering the most appropriate solutions to them, before proceeding any further with negotiation of this proposal. The Government would be content to support the Commission in doing so.”
For more on the CESL, see here.
UPDATE 4 January 2013: Parliament’s European Scrutiny Committee published its latest views on the proposed CESL on 3 January 2013; the Committee supports the Government’s opposition. Contains useful short summary of the CESL.