Ref. Ares(2015)1280013 - 24/03/2015
Ref. Ares(2016)5721834 - 03/10/2016
NEGATIVE REPLY – BASIC MODEL
Access denied to all documents
requested – No third party
By registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt
XX Advance copy by email : XXXXX
Dear Sir / Madam,
Your application for access to documents – Ref GestDem No 201Y/XXXX
We refer to your letter / e-mail / fax dated dd/mm/yyyy in which you make a request for access to
documents, registered on dd/mm/yyyy under the above mentioned reference number.
Your application concerns the following document/documents:
Describe the document requested or provide a list of relevant documents. If the application covers a
large number of documents, the list can be put in an annex. [If the document(s) requested do(es) not
exist, the request is devoid of purpose and thus no further reasoning is then required].
Having examined the document/documents requested under the provisions of Regulation (EC) No
1049/2001 regarding public access to documents, I regret to inform you that your application cannot be
granted, as disclosure is prevented by exception/exceptions to the right of access laid down in Article 4
of this Regulation.
The document/documents which you seek to obtain…
Describe the type of information contained in the document/s without revealing its/their actual content.
• contains commercially sensitive business information of the company that submitted it;
• relates to an ongoing investigation regarding a possible infringement of EU law (give the
infringement case number)
• relates to an ongoing audit concerning (describe the matter)
• relates to a decision which has not yet been taken by the Commission;
Disclosure of the document/documents requested would undermine the protection of
Mention the applicable exception and describe how disclosure would affect the interest protected under
• the commercial interests of the company that submitted it, as putting this information in the
public domain would affect its competitive position on the market. Therefore the exception laid
down in Article 4(2) first indent of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 applies to this document.
• the purpose of the ongoing investigation; indeed, disclosure of the document at this point in
time would affect the climate of mutual trust between the authorities of the Member State and
the Commission, which is required to enable them to resolve the case without having to refer it
to the Court of Justice. Therefore the exception laid down in Article 4(2) third indent of
Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 applies to this document.;
• the purpose of the ongoing audit, as it would put in the public domain preliminary findings
which have not yet been confirmed and which may be rebutted by the persons/entities being
audited; disclosure at this point in time would unduly interfere with the contradictory procedure
and may undermine the rights of the persons/entities concerned.; Therefore the exception laid
down in Article 4(2) third indent of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 applies to this document.
• the decision-making process of the Commission, as it would reveal preliminary views and
policy options which are currently under consideration; the Commission's services must be free
to explore all possible options in preparation of a decision free from external pressure.
Therefore the exception laid down in Article 4(3) first subparagraph of Regulation (EC) No
1049/2001 applies to this document.
We have considered whether partial access could be granted to the document/documents requested.
Explain why it is not possible to grant access to an expunged version of the document/s.
They may be entirely covered by the exceptions or the remaining parts after expunging the confidential
information might be meaningless or illegible.
The exceptions laid down in Article 4(2) and 4(3) of Regulation 1049/2001 apply unless there is an
overriding public interest in disclosure of the document/documents.
Explain why the public interest in making the content of the document/s public does not outweigh the
harm disclosure would cause to the interest/s protected by the invoked exception/s.
This section should not be included when exceptions under Article 4(1) are invoked.
In accordance with Article 7(2) of Regulation 1049/2001, you are entitled to make a confirmatory
application requesting the Commission to review this position.
Such a confirmatory application should be addressed within 15 working days upon receipt of this letter
to the Secretary-General of the Commission at the following address:
Transparency unit SG-B-4
or by email to: [email address]