Honourable Paraskevi Michou, Director European Commission DG JUSTICE
Directorate A – Civil Justice, started her speech stating that the European area
of justice should be an area of mutual trust, where court judgements should be
recognized and forced throughout the EU.
To respond to the economic crisis
the Commission has prioritized new legislative measures that facilitate the free
movement of judgements of civil documents and propose common rules within the EU
in order to strengthen the functioning of the civil market.
Ms. Michou stated that adopting these laws and improving national judicial
systems will not be enough for making it work. They need to cooperate with each
other with best possible ways. In that respect Ms. Michou adverted to the
European judicial network in civil and commercial matters. This network is
composed of national contact points from bodies of certain authorities,
magistrates and legal practitioners at national level.
Furthermore Ms. Michou put forward that to interconnect European judicial
contact points, training of legal practitioners plays a crucial role. A study of
the EP published in 2011 indicates that are quite substantial obstacles to the
participation of EU training for judges, prosecutors and court staff in the
member states, such as work load, financial problems, and language barriers.
The Commission has set the goal that in the years 2011 to 2020 an European
judicial training session or an judicial exchange should be offered for a number
equivalent of the half of the legal practitioners. That means 700.000
participants. It looks unrealistic, but, as Ms. Michou underlined, with the
initiatives how to interconnect and how to use the knowledge management systems
makes her at least more optimistic about the achievement of that.
Ms Michou ended her speech by stating the DG Justice welcomes the work of the
network of court coordinators: "Within DG Justice we are willing to work with
you together to learn from your experience, to hear your thoughts and views of
how to improve the implementation of EU law and how to achieve quality of
national judicial systems."