EU Commission report into Agency Directive

Agents understandably think that it is good. Principals unsurprisingly are at best ambivalent towards it. But love it or loath it, with the publication on 17 July of the EU Commission report on its year long consultation into its effectiveness (http://ec.europa.eu/growth/single-market/services/free-movement-professionals/qualifications-recognition/specific-legislation/index_en.htm), the EU Agents Directive has been found to “have been effective in achieving its objective to facilitate cross-border operations in commercial representation”. The Directive will be maintained in its current form.
 
The purpose of the consultation had been to assess the functioning of the Directive and whether it remained fit-for-purpose in terms of effectiveness, efficiency, relevance, coherence and EU added value.
 
For UK principals and agents the Commission’s report means that there will be no change or abolition of the Commercial Agents Regulations unless, of course, there is a Brexit in the future. 
 
For those UK principals with agents elsewhere in the EU, the same is true – whether the agency agreements they use are stated to be subject to English law (which the agreements should for the protection of the principals concerned) or result in the application of the law of the country in which the agents undertakes their activities.
 
The same is also the case for those UK agents acting for principals elsewhere in the EU under agency agreements - whether their agreements provide for the law of the country in which the principals are based to apply or (better still) English law applies.

Stephen Sidkin
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