Sum­ma­ry of the case:

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Fla­mi­nio Cos­ta, sha­re­hol­der of the com­pa­ny Edi­son Vol­ta, lost his rights to re­ceive di­vi­dends when an Ita­lian sta­tute na­tio­na­li­sing elec­tri­ci­ty com­pa­nies to form a new one na­med Ente Na­zio­nale per l'Ener­gia Elet­tri­ca (ENEL). Dis­sa­tis ied, he no lon­ger pays his elec­tri­ci­ty bills. The Giu­dice Con­ci­lia­tore Court of Mi­lan re­fer­red this ques­tion of prio­ri­ties to the Eu­ro­pean Union Court of Jus­tice (ECJ)(3) to rule on the law­ful­ness of the na­tio­na­li­za­tion and de fac­to es­ta­blish­ment of a com­mer­cial mo­no­po­ly for the pro­duc­tion and dis­tri­bu­tion of elec­tri­ci­ty un­der Eu­ro­pean com­pe­ti­tion law (ban on state aid ex­cept in the case of de­ro­ga­tions sub­mit­ted to the Eu­ro­pean Com­mis­sion Art.102 and 93, pro­gres­sive de­ve­lop­ment of na­tio­nal mo­no­po­lies, art. 37) and free­dom of es­ta­blish­ment of the com­mon mar­ket (Art. 53)(4).

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