Case C-194/94 CIA Security v Signalson 
- Belgium adopted a national law setting out requirements which alarm units must satisfy before being sold
- This adoption was in breach of EU law, namely directive 83/189/EC, which required such technical laws to be approved by the Commission
- There was no attempt to obtain approval
- Alarm systems were sold internationally in compliance with the Belgian law, but in breach of EU law (due to the non-compliance with the directive)
- Were the sale contracts binding?
- Technical directives, such as directive 83/189/EC are required to ensure the free movement of goods
- They must therefore be interpreted as having horizontal direct effect
- Individuals can therefore rely on them
- As the contracts were not valid under (supreme) EU law, they were not enforceable
- This narrow concept of direct effectiveness has become known as incidental effect
Posted in EU Law Revision Notes.
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