Viviane Reding defends delegated acts in the EU DP proposals

Speaking at the European Data Protection Commissioners’ Spring Conference in Luxembourg on 3 May, EU Justice Commissioner, Viviane Reding, explained that the large number of delegated acts in the EU proposals for a Data Protection Regulation leave some room for adapting to new technological developments without the need to resort to a full legislative process.

Reding said that the criticism voiced is mainly based on misunderstandings. Delegated acts allow the European Commision to ‘supplement or amend certain non-essential elements’ of a legislative act, she said. She reassured the DP Commissioners that the possibility to use delegated acts must be explicitly agreed by the European Parliament and Council, and the Commission would consult broadly before making proposals for delegated acts. She said that in this way the EU DP Commissioners’ opinions will have even more weight after the reform.

With regard to international data transfers, she said that the Commission will continue to work on Binding Corporate Rules, and the continuation of the US Safe Harbor Agreement, as well as contractual clauses. She said that adequacy decisions for New Zealand and Uruguay will be adopted shortly.

She also said that while the European Commission would, under the new proposals, have the power to suspend a decision of a Data Protection Authority, this is ‘limited to cases where conformity with EU law is doubtful, or where there is a risk of an inconsistent application of our data protection rules’. She said that, in fact, the European Commission fights for the independence of Data Protection Authorities, as has been recently seen in Hungary.

The speech is available at