Language of document :

Appeal brought on 26 July 2017 by the Landeskreditbank Baden-Württemberg — Förderbank against the judgment of the General Court (Fourth Chamber, Extended Composition) delivered on 16 May 2017 in Case T-122/15, Landeskreditbank Baden-Württemberg — Förderbank v European Central Bank

(Case C-450/17 P)

Language of the case: German


Appellant: Landeskreditbank Baden-Württemberg — Förderbank (represented by: A. Glos, T. Lübbig and M. Benzing, Rechtsanwälte)

Other parties to the proceedings: European Central Bank (ECB), European Commission

Form of order sought by the appellant

The appellant claims that the Court should:

set aside the judgment of the General Court of 16 May 2017 in Case T-122/15;

annul the decision of the ECB of 5 January 2015 (ECB/SSM/15/1 — 0SK1ILSPWNVBNQWU0W18/3), ordering the effects of the substituted decision of the ECB of 1 September 2014 (ECB/SSM/14/1 — 0SK1ILSPWNVBNQWU0W18/1) to be maintained;

in the alternative, set aside the judgment of the General Court referred to above and refer the case back to the General Court;

order the ECB to pay the costs of the proceedings.

Grounds of appeal and main arguments

1.    First ground of appeal, alleging infringement of EU law in the interpretation and application of Article 6(4) of the SSM Regulation 1 and Article 70 of the SSM Framework Regulation 2

The General Court incorrectly interpreted the relevant legal provisions of the second subparagraph of Article 6(4) of the SSM Regulation, in conjunction with Article 70(1) of the SSM Framework Regulation. It incorrectly concluded that ‘particular circumstances’, which must lead to the classification of an entity as a less significant entity, exist only if direct supervision by the national authorities is better suited to achieving the aim of the SSM Regulation than direct supervision by the ECB. The General Court relied solely on the English language version of the SSM Framework Regulation in its interpretation and infringed the principle that all language versions are equally authentic. The General Court wrongly failed to interpret the standards in the light of superior law through the competence approach of the principle of proportionality. It incorrectly rejected a manifest error of assessment in the analysis of the facts of the case by the ECB and assessed as little as the ECB had done previously whether the appellant, by reason of the specific factual circumstances put forward by it, is to be classified as a less significant entity within the meaning of the second subparagraph of Article 6(4) of the SSM Regulation, in conjunction with Article 70(1) of the SSM Framework Regulation, due to ‘particular circumstances’. The General Court therefore infringed its obligation comprehensively to review the contested decision for errors of assessment.

2.    Second ground of appeal, alleging distortion of the contested decision and an incorrect assessment of the requirements applicable to the statement of reasons

The General Court distorted the reasoning of the contested decision and substituted its own reasoning for that of the ECB. Since it distorted the content of the contested decision, it disregarded the fact that the ECB did not respect the EU-law requirements relating to the obligation to state reasons: the reasoning of the contested decision is illogical and inherently contradictory.

3.    Third ground of appeal, alleging procedural errors on the part of the General Court through the introduction of elements which are not the subject of these proceedings

The judgment of the General Court infringed the appellant’s right to be heard and the principle of audi alteram partem. The grounds underlying the judgment introduced perspectives relevant to the decision which were not themselves discussed by the parties in the judicial proceedings.


1 Council Regulation (EU) No 1024/2013 of 15 October 2013 conferring specific tasks on the European Central Bank concerning policies relating to the prudential supervision of credit institutions (OJ 2013 L 287, p. 63).

2     Regulation (EU) No 468/2014 of the European Central Bank of 16 April 2014 establishing the framework for cooperation within the Single Supervisory Mechanism between the European Central Bank and national competent authorities and with national designated authorities (SSM Framework Regulation) (OJ 2014 L 141, p. 1).