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  • Author: Oliver Vossius x
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Due to reference of the Landgericht (County Court) Berlin, the ECJ ruled that advance payments on the cost of publication of branch offices of foreign companies in Germany do not infringe the freedom of establishment granted by the European Treaty – even if this implies the costly publication of extensive objects of the company. Such ruling could have been avoided by distinguishing between the objects of the main office and the (more specific and hence shorter) objects of the branch, making use of extensive German case law. The judgement of the ECJ gives rise to the question whether the Court wishes to limit the consequences of its past rulings on freedom of establishment of companies or not. Moreover the proportionality of registration and publication of extensive objects of companies in Germany should be discussed in consideration of its limited usefulness and the slimmer approaches of other jurisdictions. To put it in a nutshell, the case illustrates the need for convergence and harmonization of European company law.