On 21 April 2009, the European Commission adopted a report and a green paper on the review and application of the Council Regulation (EC) No 44/2001 (known as “Brussels I”) on jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters. The Regulation sets out rules on the identification of the court over which Member States shall have jurisdiction in cases of a dispute (in the civil and commercial field) involving persons from different Member States. It also clarifies the rules on the recognition and enforcement of the judgment adopted by that court in other Member States.

The report presents an evaluation of the Regulation’s application since its adoption. The green paper outlines possible improvements on the points raised in the report: (i) removing the remaining obstacles to a free circulation of judgments; (ii) protecting European citizens and companies in cases of disputes with parties domiciled in third States, ensuring equal access to the courts of the Member States and equal protection against judgments given by courts in non-EU countries; (iii) avoiding parallel proceedings in different Member States and ensuring the application of contractual agreements as to which courts in the European Union will deal with the case.

A proposal for revision of the Regulation should be adopted by the end of 2009, on the basis of the consultation launched by the green paper.