Language of document : ECLI:EU:C:2016:865

Appeal brought on 5 April 2017 by the European Union, represented by the Court of Justice of the European Union, against the judgment of the General Court (Third Chamber, extended composition) delivered on 17 February 2017 in Case T-40/15, ASPLA and Armando Álvarez v European Union

(Case C-174/17 P)

Language of the case: Spanish

Parties

Appellant: European Union, represented by the Court of Justice of the European Union (represented by: J. Inghelram, Á.M. Almendros Manzano and P. Giusta, acting as Agents)

Other parties to the proceedings: Plásticos Españoles, S.A. (ASPLA), Armando Álvarez S.A. and European Commission

Form of order sought

The appellant claims that the Court of Justice should:

set aside point 1 of the operative part of the judgment under appeal;

dismiss as unfounded the claim brought by ASPLA and Armando Álvarez at first instance seeking payment of an amount of EUR 3 495 038.66 as compensation for the damage they claim to have suffered as a result of the breach of the obligation to adjudicate within a reasonable time;

order ASPLA and Armando Álvarez to pay the costs.

Pleas in law and main arguments

The first ground of appeal alleges an error of law in the interpretation of the concept of causal relationship, in that the General Court held that the breach of the obligation to adjudicate within a reasonable time was the determining cause of the alleged material damage, consisting of the payment of the bank guarantee charges, whereas, in accordance with settled case-law, the determining cause of the payment of those charges is the choice made by an undertaking itself not to pay the fine during the proceedings before the EU judicature.

The second ground of appeal alleges an error of law in the interpretation of the concept of damage, in that the General Court did not apply to the alleged material damage resulting from the payment of the bank guarantee charges the same condition which it imposed in respect of the alleged material damage resulting from the payment of interest on the fine, namely, that the applicants at first instance had to show that the financial burden resulting from the latter payment was greater than the advantage conferred on them by not paying the fine.

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