Official working visit of the Constitutional Court of Romania

22 November 2019

The visit is part of the bilateral agenda of the two authorities of constitutional jurisdiction and it included discussions on: “Constitutional Justice in the European Union – dialogue and mutual trust”.

The bilateral meeting was attended, from Hungary, by Dr. Sulyok Tamás, President, Mrs Dr. Hörcherné Marosi Ildikó, Judge, Mr Dr. Bitskey Botond, General Secretary, Mr Dr. Szabó Attila, Director of the President Office, and Mrs Ágoston Andrea, Protocol Director.

The President of the Constitutional Court of Hungary, Mr Sulyok Tamás, welcomed the members of the two delegations and expressed his pleasure as to the fact that at the Hungarian-Romanian regular bilateral meetings topics of a special value and utility for both constitutional courts are systematically debated, appreciating in this respect the special meaning of the institutionalisation of the cooperation between constitutional courts.

The President of the Constitutional Court of Romania, Mr Valer Dorneanu, thanked for the invitation and also highlighted the importance of bilateral meetings.
At the meeting, both parties presented current aspects from the case-law of the two constitutional courts and noticed that there is a tendency to challenge the erga omnes effect of theirs decisions.

Both parties agreed that the decisions of the constitutional courts have an erga omnes effect. They underlined that the foundations of European constitutional justice are at risk if the erga omnes effect of the constitutional courts’ decisions was affected even to a lesser extent. In the continental legal system, as in the Romanian or the Hungarian system, the decisions of ordinary courts have only an inter partes effect and, in this context, the constitutional courts have been established, according to the Kelsenian model, and the erga omnes effect of their decisions is a fundamental component of the European constitutional justice. Challenging the erga omnes effect of the constitutional courts’ decisions means challenging their very existence. The two parties also had concordant opinions in this respect. For affirming and strengthening the fundamental role of the constitutional courts, the cooperation between them is necessary, based on consultation and solidarity in view of supporting common positions. The Romanian and Hungarian constitutional courts undertake to act in this spirit and to also express this opinion to the other constitutional courts.

Both parties have underlined that the constitutional courts cannot accept any comments or deviations as to the binding effect of their decisions and their erga omnes effect. This has to be one of the common concerns of all the constitutional courts in Central and Eastern Europe. Both constitutional courts consider that a closer multilateral cooperation is needed, which may be based on direct communication. An effective form of cooperation could be the creation of an associative organised formula (network) of constitutional courts in Central and Eastern Europe.