In its Judgment of 6 March 2014 in case C-206/13 Siragusa, the Court of Justice of the EU has continued developing its case law on the lack of applicability / jurisdiction to interpret the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU (CFREU) in purely domestic situations (which it had, amongst other instances, already indicated in Romeo).
In my view, the approach adopted by the CJEU is prone to create potential situations of reverse discrimination and may end up creating multiple (and possibly conflicting) standards of protection of fundamental rights in the EU with significant constitutional implications.
In the case at hand, the CJEU was presented with a question on the interpretation of the right to property recognised in article 17 CFREU and, more specifically, on whether it could be constructed as a limit against certain landscape protection rules applicable in Italy. The issue was raised by an Italian court hearing a dispute between an Italian citizen and an Italian public authority. Despite the efforts in trying to connect the situation with the (indirect) application of EU environmental law, the CJEU was not persuaded that there was a sufficient connection and, therefore, rejected to provide a substantive interpretation. The main argument of the CJEU was indeed that
30 [...] there is nothing to suggest that the provisions of Legislative Decree [...] fall within the scope of EU law. Those provisions do not implement rules of EU law [...].
31 It is also important to consider the objective of protecting fundamental rights in EU law, which is to ensure that those rights are not infringed in areas of EU activity, whether through action at EU level or through the implementation of EU law by the Member States.
32 The reason for pursuing that objective is the need to avoid a situation in which the level of protection of fundamental rights varies according to the national law involved in such a way as to undermine the unity, primacy and effectiveness of EU law (see, to that effect, Case 11/70 Internationale Handelsgesellschaft  ECR 1125, paragraph 3, and Case C‑399/11 Melloni  ECR, paragraph 60). However, there is nothing in the order for reference to suggest that any such risk is involved in the case before the referring court.
33 It follows from all the foregoing that it has not been established that the Court has jurisdiction to interpret Article 17 of the Charter (see, to that effect, Case C‑245/09 Omalet  ECR I‑13771, paragraph 18; see also the Orders in Case C‑457/09 Chartry  ECR I‑819, paragraphs 25 and 26; Case C‑134/12 Corpul Naţional al Poliţiştilor  ECR, paragraph 15; Case C‑498/12 Pedone  ECR, paragraph 15; and Case C‑371/13 SC Schuster & Co Ecologic  ECR, paragraph 18) (C-206/13 at paras 30-33, emphasis added).
In my view, this line of reasoning (acknowledgedly, rather in line with art 51 CFREU and art 6 TEU) is clearly problematic. To begin with, because it clearly disconnects (implicitly, at least) the protection of the CFREU rights from EU citizenship (art 20 TFEU, coupled with the general prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of nationality in art 18 TFEU). The CJEU has clearly considered it insufficient that EU citizens can be granted different levels of protection of their CFREU rights at domestic level as a result of the application of the domestic laws as sufficient justification for intervention (i.e. to assume jurisdiction and provide legal interpretation). By restricting the goal of a common level of protection of CFREU rights to cases in which 'the unity, primacy and effectiveness of EU law' is affected and excluding its competence, the CJEU seems to forget that the CFREU is in itself EU law and, consequently, that it should be afforded the same treatment as the other Treaty provisions.
Secondly, the CJEU is laying down too strong foundations for unresolved problems of reverse discrimination. If the claimant in Siragusa had not been Italian and, consequently, a (very loose) connection to free movement rights could be established, the CJEU may have been willing to assess the intervention by the Italian State on the property of a (moving) EU citizen under a different light (worse still, that challenge could be easier for corporate claimants than for individuals, at least if they do not engage in an economic activity, since 'corporate citizens' could also be potentially protected by freedom of establishment).
In such a case, the trigger for the application of the CFREU would be equally unrelated to the content of the rights of the CFREU themselves and, sometimes, the trigger for CJEU intervention may simply result from the fact that the EU citizen affected exercised or not free movement rights--which, in my view, continues to create an unjustifiable discrimination between moving (proper) EU citizens and non-moving (unaware) EU citizens that can only continue to erode the potential development of the EU.
Finally, this line of reasoning may end up creating a situation where the (constitutional) courts of the Member States may be obliged to enforce at the same time conflicting standards of substantive protection for a given fundamental right, depending on the 'sorce of law' that controls it in a given situation. And that will surely be difficult to understand. How could 'my' right to private property be different under 'my' domestic constitutional law protection or under 'my' CFREU protection, depending on factors unrelated to me, my property, or the rules (primarily) applicable? Surely the compatibility between the CFREU and competing (superior) standards of protection (those derived from the European Convention on Human Rights) have (somehow) been ironed out in art 52(3) CFREU. However, the situation is not the same with (lower-ranking?) domestic standards of protection [art 52(4) CFREU is clearly insufficient for that task] and, in my view, the CJEU approach is not helpful in that regard either.
Therefore, the continued rejection of its role as a constitutional court of the EU and the increasing restriction of the scope of application of the CFREU in which the CJEU is engaged are, in my view, undesirable developments in EU law.