CJEU Case C-66/18 | Commission v Hungary (Higher education)

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Author (Corporate)
Series Details C-66/18
Publication Date 2017-2020
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Judgment from the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) concerning the amendments carried out by Hungary to its 2011 Higher Education Act.

Further information:

The Hungarian Parliament adopted in April 2017 an amendment to the country's Higher Education Act of 2011. The changes added new requirements as regards the name of foreign higher education institutions, the need for bilateral agreements between Hungary and a non-EEA country of origin of the foreign higher education institution, the need to provide higher education services also in the country of origin as well as additional requirements for the registration and authorisation of higher education services in Hungary.

In December 2017, the European Commission decided to refer Hungary to the CJEU claiming that the amended law (also known as Lex CEU) was incompatible both with the commitments undertaken by the Member State within the framework of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and with the freedom of establishment, the free movement of services and the provisions of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union relating to academic freedom, the freedom to found higher education institutions and the freedom to conduct a business.

On 6 October 2020, the Court decided that the conditions introduced by Hungary to enable foreign higher education institutions to carry out their activities in its territory are incompatible with EU law.

Related Links
Commentary and Analysis
European Law Blog, 29/04/2020: Academic Freedom protected via the CJEU? – The Advocate’s General Opinion in Commission v Hungary (C-66/18) https://europeanlawblog.eu/2020/04/29/academic-freedom-protected-via-the-cjeu-the-advocates-general-opinion-in-commission-v-hungary-c-66-18/
Balkan Insight, 06/10/2020: Legal victory for Central European University is too little, too late https://balkaninsight.com/2020/10/06/legal-victory-for-central-european-university-is-too-little-too-late/

Politico, 05/03/2020: EU lawyer: Hungary’s Central European University measures broke law https://www.politico.eu/article/george-soros-eu-lawyer-hungary-central-european-university-measures-broke-law/
Euronews, 06/10/2020: EU court rules against Hungary's Viktor Orban over Soros university https://www.euronews.com/2020/10/06/eu-court-rules-against-hungary-s-viktor-orban-over-soros-university
BBC News, 06/10/2020: Hungary broke EU law by forcing out university, says European Court https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-54433398
The Guardian, 06/10/2020: EU court rules against Hungary over law that targeted Soros-affiliated university https://www.theguardian.com/law/2020/oct/06/top-eu-court-rules-against-hungary-on-soros-university
Deutsche Welle, 06/10/2020: ECJ rules against Hungary's higher education law https://p.dw.com/p/3jUIA
AP News, 06/10/2020: EU court rules against Hungary’s Orban over Soros university https://apnews.com/article/george-soros-courts-higher-education-hungary-education-444c42b54b945259603e1c263d770a47
Reuters, 06/10/2020:EU strikes down Hungary university reform, Soros wants EU to set example https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN26R11F
RFE/RL, 06/10/2020: Top EU Court Strikes Down Hungarian Reforms That Hit Soros University https://www.rferl.org/a/top-eu-court-strikes-down-hungarian-reforms-that-hit-soros-university/30878041.html
EurActiv, 06/10/2020: Hungary breached obligations to uphold academic freedom, EU top court ruled https://www.euractiv.com/section/justice-home-affairs/news/hungary-breached-obligations-to-uphold-academic-freedom-eu-top-court-ruled/
Politico, 06/10/2020: EU top court rules Hungary’s university reform unlawful https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-court-hungary-university-reform-unlawful/
EUObserver, 07/10/2020: Orban move evicting Budapest university 'unlawful' https://euobserver.com/political/149660

CJEU CURIA: Case C-66/18 | Commission v Hungary (Higher education) http://curia.europa.eu/juris/documents.jsf?num=C-66/18
CJEU: Press Release (No. 25/20), 05/03/2020: Advocate General’s Opinion in Case C-66/18 | Commission v Hungary https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2020-03/cp200025en.pdf
Central European University: Newsroom, 05/03/2020: CEU Welcomes the Advocate General's Opinion Regarding Lex CEU https://www.ceu.edu/article/2020-03-05/ceu-welcomes-advocate-generals-opinion-regarding-lex-ceu
CJEU: Press Release (No. 66/20), 06/10/2020: Judgment in Case C-66/18 | Commission v Hungary https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2020-10/cp200125en.pdf
Central European University: Newsroom, 06/10/2020: “Landmark Judgment” - Lex CEU Struck Down by European Court of Justice https://www.ceu.edu/article/2020-10-06/landmark-judgment-lex-ceu-struck-down-european-court-justice

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