Edited by Hans-W. Micklitz and Fabrizio Cafaggi
Chapter 8: The Authority of an Academic ‘Draft Common Frame of Reference’
Nils Jansen I. INTRODUCTION The idea of a Common Frame of Reference for European contract law (CFR) is highly political. It is not only a controversial project in itself,1 but moreover it is essentially open-ended. Political actors, especially in the European Commission, have been reluctant to formulate clear aims or visions with regard to the form, the legal nature or the date for such an instrument to come into being.2 Indeed, different papers published by the Commission and by the Parliament have presented rather different ideas.3 These days, even the 1 See Jansen (2004), 1 ff.; Jansen/Zimmermann (2008), 506 ff.; Eidenmüller/ Faust/Grigoleit/Jansen/Wagner/Zimmermann (2008), 529 ff. 2 See Jansen (2006a), 540 f. 3 Thus, in 2002 the European Parliament had proposed an extremely ambitious timescale for the enactment of a European Civil Code by the year 2010 (Resolution of the European Parliament on the approximation of the civil and commercial law of the Member States  OJ C140E/538). However, in a Communication entitled ‘A More Coherent European Contract Law: An Action Plan’, the European Commission relegated the idea of a Code to a secondary position; and in a later Communication the idea of a European Contract Code was explicitly rejected: Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, ‘European Contract Law and the revision of the acquis: the way forward’, COM(2004)651 final (11 October 2004). Likewise, the Council has ‘welcomed’ ‘the Commission’s repeated reassurance that it does not intend to propose a “European Civil...
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