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Legal opinion unequivocally proves: Positive list for pets would be illegal

Prof. Dr. Dr. Tade M. Spranger

Press information from the pet industry: (Translated with DeepL)

Wiesbaden, June 21, 2023 - Prof. Dr. Dr. Tade Matthias Spranger from the Faculty of Law at the University of Bonn has written an "Expert Opinion on the Legal Admissibility of the Introduction of a National Positive List for Pets with Special Consideration of Constitutional and European Aspects" on behalf of the German Pet Trade and Industry Association (ZZF). On 167 pages, the legal opinion comes to a clear assessment: The introduction of a national positive list for pets, as recently proposed by Federal Minister Cem Özdemir, would comprehensively violate various requirements of international, European and constitutional law. If the Federal Republic of Germany were to introduce a national pet positive list, the initiation of infringement proceedings, in particular by the European Commission, would be foreshadowed. A positive list at the level of the European Union would also not be compatible with European law. "A pet positive list is contrary to European law regardless of whether the originator of such a list is the German legislature or the European Union itself," clarifies the law professor.

Spranger teaches in the fields of constitutional and administrative law, European law, and German and international biotechnology law. In an honorary capacity, he was appointed as a commission member in the Animal Protection Commission by the State Office for Nature, Environment and Consumer Protection of North Rhine-Westphalia. His numerous publications include the work "Heimtierhaltung und Verfassungsrecht" (Pet Husbandry and Constitutional Law), which he published in 2018. At the presentation of his expert report on June 17, 2023, Spranger emphasized, "I am of the rock-solid conviction that the results I have worked out have a hand and a foot. The study should therefore be given considerable attention in the political discourse."

The report is freely available on the website www.tierwohl-statt-heimtierverbot.de as a pdf in German and in English.

 "The English version is very important to me so that the expert opinion can also have an impact at the European level," clarifies Spranger. The German-language expert opinion and the English translation will appear together in a book to be published by LIT-Verlag in July. In addition to the ZZF, funding was made possible by the Industrieverband Heimtierbedarf (IVH), the European Pet Organization (EPO), the Bundesverband für fachgerechten Natur-, Tier- und Artenschutz (BNA), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde (DGHT), the German Canine Association (VDH), the Association of Zoological Gardens (VdZ), Leipzig Zoo, the Citizen Conservation Foundation (CC), the Austrian Chamber of Commerce - Pet Trade (WKO) and the Wirtschaftsgemeinschaft Zoologischer Fachbetriebe (WZF).

On the level of EU law, a national positive list would represent a violation of fundamental freedoms and here in particular of the free movement of goods, he said. "The alleged dangers from >>dangerous animals>public safety and order.



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