Sabrina Röttger-Wirtz, ‘An open door to more open access to Agency documents? The General Court rulings on the EMA transparency policy’ (29 March 2018)
Transparency is a persistently hot topic with regard to European Agencies. Especially the balance between granting access to documents and the protection of commercially confidential information, which might be contained in documents that third parties submit to Agencies in the context of administrative procedures, seems to be rather difficult to strike.
As Emilia Korkea-Aho and Päivi Leino already discussed in a TARN blog post in December, the legal frameworks governing access to documents, ownership of such documents, and copyright protection seem to intersect rather than interact, leading to a lack of legal certainty regarding the publication of documents by European Agencies. Recent judgements by the General Court in the field of pharmaceuticals now provide some guidance on this difficult conundrum.