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Abstract

The paper approaches the problematic related to the role played by the proportionality principle in the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union, through the lens of the Billerud case. When conducting the proportionality analysis, the Court employs different standards of the examination, depending on the subject matter in question. In this sense, the paper focuses on three distinctive fields: discretionary policy choices, penalties, and fundamental rights. The paper addresses the Billerud case from all three perspectives. The Court's ruling was approached from the perspective of discretionary policy choices and was thus deprived of an in-depth proportionality examination. In this sense, the paper argues that if the case were approached from a different angle, namely from the fundamental rights perspective, it could have been ruled differently, as the Charter would have called for a stricter standard of the Court’s review.