Official Journal of the European Union

C 128/21

Reference for a preliminary ruling from the Thüringer Finanzgericht (Germany), lodged on 25 February 2008 — Glückauf Brauerei GmbH v Hauptzollamt Erfurt

(Case C-83/08)

(2008/C 128/35)

Language of the case: German

Referring court

Thüringer Finanzgericht

Parties to the main proceedings

Claimant: Glückauf Brauerei GmbH

Defendant: Hauptzollamt Erfurt

Question referred

Are the criteria of legal and economic independence referred to in Article 4(1) of Council Directive 92/83/EEC of 19 October 1992 on the harmonisation of the structures of excise duties on alcohol and alcoholic beverages (1) for applying the reduced duty rates to be understood, in view of the recitals to the Directive, as meaning that economic dependence between otherwise legally independent breweries is to be presumed only where the breweries concerned cannot act as competitors in the market uninfluenced by each other, or is the mere de facto possibility of influence on the business activity of the breweries sufficient for the criterion of independence to be met no longer?

(1)  OJ 1992 L 316, p. 21.