A condicionalidade dos Fundos Europeus
: a vacina eficaz contra o ataque ao Estado de Direito?

  • Beatriz de Sá Coutinho Correia dos Santos (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


There is no doubt that the EU is facing its most serious crisis, which is corroding its very foundations, of which we intend to highlight the Rule of Law. Its dilapidation has been swift and the Hungarian and Polish governments have assumed the role of pilots. The vulnerability of Rule of Law is increasingly obvious from day to day, its fortress is crumbling and its rehabilitation seems forever more distant. In this context we will analyse and problematize about the Union's response to such frontal attack. An effective reply is not only necessary but urgent. Firstly, the fact that the Union can legitimately and with forceful arguments intervene in situations of violation of Rule of Law by Member States will be confirmed. We shall see how the question of legitimacy is a key factor that will lead us up to the final interrogation. Next comes the question: has the protection of Rule of Law carried out by the institutions been effective? If not, where has it been unsuccessful? Unable to mention all the available mechanisms due to lack of space, here there will be considerations of the five most pertinent mechanisms – either due to their adequacy or to their relationship with a relevant question - for protecting Rule of Law. If the conclusion is that the system is inoperable, logically the next step is to find alternatives. The solution brought by the institutions is incorporated in the Conditionality of Funds Regulation which came into force on the first day of the current year. Of course, the question is whether the new mechanism will staunch the existing lack of efficacy. Its potential will be assessed and we shall see if it is really the proclaimed game changer. The position adopted by the Union is crucial and now that we have a double crisis – Rule of Law and Covid-19 – it will determine the direction to be taken by the EU. Above all, the intention is to help the EU along this path, i.e., in the growth and definition of the European project, paying special attention to its values.
Date of Award29 Jul 2021
Original languagePortuguese
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorLuís Maduro (Supervisor)


  • Rule of law
  • European Union
  • Conditionality of funds
  • Recovery Fund
  • Hungary
  • Poland


  • Mestrado em Direito

Cite this