IACL World Congress, Mexico
Workshop 18: Constitutional Implications of Regional Integration
The regional integration is with regard to constitutional issues challenged on the level of the international organization itself and second on the level of the constitutions of the member states. The following questions will first address the constitutional issues on the level of the international organization itself and then address the constitutional issue of the constitutions of the member states. One has of course to be aware of the fact that national and international issues are strongly linked with each other.
1. International Issues
- Can the concepts of “constitution” and “constitutionalism” be meaningfully applied to the treaty arrangements setting up regional organizations? What are the essential elements of constitution and constitutionalism at the supranational level?
- What are the concretes guarantees of the « democracy clause » in the process of regional and supranational integration?
- What are the concrete obligations of the universal principle of the Rule of Law to be respected in the process in the treaties of regional and supranational integration?
- To what extent does the universal principle “Constitutionalism” have to be respected even by international treaties establishing regional and supranational organizations?
- What are the possible Governmental systems on the level of regional and supranational organisations?
- What should be the interaction between regional and national parliaments?
2. National Issues
- Do constitutions of member states contain some main substantial values or principles which would limit any conclusion of a regional treaty. (e.g. no unlimited competences to be granted to the regional institutions)?
- Do national constitutions contain some substantial values which determine the constitutional identity and which can not be changed even with a regional treaty?
- Should a national constitution first be amended with regard to the membership (e.g. Art. 23 of the German constitution) of a regional organization and provide for a constitutional provision containing some basic principles to be implemented by the regional treaty and some guarantees provided for national democratic institutions such as information by the national government, approval or participation in the national or even regional decision making process? (cf. the decisions of the German Constitutional Court on the Lisbon Treaty and the treaty of Maastricht)
- Are there some specific issues to be taken into account by federations with regard e.g. to the representation of the federation in regional negotiations by federal units (cf. Germany and Belgium)?
- Should the national courts have some final control in order to limit ultra vires decisions of the regional institutions?
- With regard to federal countries: Should there be given some specific powers to the federal government in order to implement regional decisions which require implementation by federal units?
Please see further: