In 2015, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled in Case C-424/13 concerning Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 – Protection of animals during transport — Long journey between Member States and between Member States and third countries — Article 14(1) — Check to be carried out related to the journey log by the competent authority at the place of departure prior to long journeys — Applicability of that provision in regards to the stages of the journey taking place outside the territory of the European Union — Applicability of the standards fixed by that regulation to that part of the journey(1).
It follows from the judgment that the Member States and transporters are responsible for complying with the provision of Regulation 1/2005 until the end of the animals’ journey and also at the destination in a third country. In particular, public authorities should require a realistic completion of the journey log to ensure compliance with the provisions of the regulation for the entire journey. Otherwise, the state authority should not issue a transport permit.
Which authority is responsible for implementing the case law C-424/13 of the CJEU? The Commission or the relevant ministries of the Member States?
Member States are primarily responsible for the implementation of the EU legislation on animal welfare. The competence of the Commission consists in monitoring the Member States’ implementation of EC law and in ensuring that national legislations and practices comply with EC law. The judgment of the Court of Justice of the EU on the Case C-424/13 — Zuchtvieh-Export(1) replies to a request for a preliminary ruling from the Bayerischer Verwaltungsgerichtshof (Germany) and provides interpretation in a particular context that may apply in other circumstances.
Since the publication of the Court judgment in April 2015, the terms and consequences of the ruling have been widely publicised and discussed among Member States competent authorities. The check of the journey log remains under the sole competence of the competent authorities of the Member State of departure as laid down in Article 14 of Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 on the protection of animals during transport(2).
(2) OJ L3, 5.1.2005, p. 1.