As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 9th of September, 2020, neighbouring Slovenia has lost another lawsuit against Croatia before the General Court of the European Union (EU), although in this case the European Commission was sued for allowing the name Teran to be mentioned as a grape variety on the label of wines produced in the Republic of Croatia, according to a report from Vecernji list.
Before Croatia’s accession to the European Union back in July 2013, Slovenia sought the protection of the Slovenian Teran with a protected designation of origin valid for the entire European Union, and the European Commission tried to help find a common solution four years after Croatia’s accession to the bloc, to which Slovenia of course did not agree.
Finally, back in 2017, the European Commission adopted a delegated regulation that allows the name Teran to be used on Croatian bottles with the designation of origin “Croatian Istria”. The delegated regulation has been applied retroactively, since the date of Croatia’s accession to the European Union on the 1st of July 2013, given the fact that teran is traditionally produced in Croatia as well.
However, Slovenia was deeply offended by the European Commission, taking things as far as to go to the EU General Court in Luxembourg, claiming, among other things, that the move retroactivity violates the principle of legal certainty and the legitimate expectations of Slovenian wine producers. According to the Slovenian arguments, they expected that the Croats wouldn’t be able to continue with the use of the name Teran after joining the European Union, of which Slovenia has been a member state for longer.
The court ruled yesterday that the Slovenian lawsuit against Croatia has no basis and as such should simply be rejected.
It was crucial for the EU’s General Court to examine whether the European Commission regulation had any significant shortcomings as a result of that retroactive application. And it has been concluded that there hasn’t been.