Before that, only Maltese citizens could practice the notarial profession in Malta.
The Commission has also decided to close infringement proceedings against Belgium and Luxembourg relating to the nationality condition for access to the notarial profession. Similar proceedings against Germany, France and Austria were closed in February. These Member States, which had been censured by the Court of Justice in its judgments of 24 May 20111, brought this discriminatory situation to an end by amending their legislation.
The EU Commission has also decided to close its infringement proceedings against Lithuania, which have also scrapped the nationality condition for notaries.
In its judgments of last May, the Court took the view that the work of notaries was not covered by the exceptions to the right of establishment provided for in Article 51 of the TFEU in relation to the exercise of official authority. Consequently, the nationality condition for access to the notarial profession constituted discrimination on the grounds of nationality, which is prohibited under Article 49 of the TFEU that deals with the right of establishment. Spain, Estonia, Italy and Portugal have already stopped it.
The latest information on infringement proceedings against Member States can be found here.