national parliaments

Our work with national parliaments

Latest

Populism and Brexit, a sign of the times
Video
21.03.2017 - 11:00
Meeting of the Network of National Parliamentarians in charge of European Affairs and Members of the EPP Group in the European Parliament. MEPs and MPs discussed populism and Brexit, focusing on possible answers to serious issues like youth...
Esther De Lange MEP
News
11.11.2016 - 10:54
EPP-affiliated group leaders from the national parliaments met this week to discuss the future of Europe. Just before the American elections, it was clear that traditional parties need to listen better to the concerns of citizens and provide...
Tom Vandenkendelaere MEP
News
13.10.2016 - 10:29
All too often the gap between national parliaments and the European Parliament seems wide. Members of national parliaments often have only a dim awareness of what goes on ‘in Europe’. MEPs, from their side, would benefit from closer ties...
Romanian Flag
Press Release
28.09.2016 - 09:32
Starting on Thursday, the EPP Group Bureau will hold a two-day meeting in Bucharest, Romania, to discuss cohesion policy as a structural policy promoting growth and economic development across all EU regions as a key EU instrument for investment in...

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Relations between the EU and National Parliaments

EU-National Parliaments

For the first time, the Lisbon Treaty gives Parliaments of EU Member States the possibility to directly influence the decision-making processes on an EU level. The main aim is two-fold: to increase the democratic legitimacy of the EU by ensuring that democratically-elected representatives of Member States take part in the making of EU legislation, but also to make sure that the EU acts only in cases where it can bring an added value. Therefore, the main tasks of national parliaments are to generate debate on European affairs at national level and to be the guardians of the principle of subsidiarity. The principle of subsidiarity ensures that decisions will not be taken at European level if they can be taken efficiently at regional or local level (except in the areas which fall within EU exclusive competence).

Contacts
Esther de LANGE
EPP Group Vice-Chairwoman
 
Staff
 
 

The Lisbon Treaty for the first time specifically acknowledges the role of national parliaments in the EU. Article 12 of the Treaty of the European Union (TEU) reads: “National parliaments contribute actively to the good functioning of the Union”. The enhanced role of national parliaments in the European decision-making process can be divided into three categories:

Information – national parliaments should be informed about a piece of legislation at proposal stage
Active participation – in certain cases outlined in the Treaty, national parliaments can actively participate in decision-making processes at EU level
Objection – national parliaments have the right to voice objections to EU policy proposals and the EU has to take these objections into consideration These categories indicate the crucial importance given to all levels of involvement of national parliaments in European policy-making.

The changes brought by the Lisbon Treaty give national parliaments the opportunity to initiate a timely national debate on European questions. Furthermore, they enable the national parliaments to consider whether the principle of subsidiarity has been respected. Altogether, this allows a constructive involvement in the European decision-making process.

The EPP Group recognised the importance of continuous debate with national parliaments very early on and holds regular meetings with national parliamentarians elected on lists of parties that belong to the EPP family.

We have established different networks between Members of the European Parliament and national Members of Parliament from the EPP political family. These inter-parliamentary meetings are crucial for generating political debate on Europe-related matters given the diverse national dimensions. The most important gatherings are the Summits of EPP Group Chairmen. In addition, we hold meetings of the EPP Group Network of Parliamentarians working on European Affairs and the Young Members Network.

 

 

What the Group organises

Summits of EPP Group Chairmen
The Summits bring together all EPP parliamentary group chairs in the EU national parliaments. They meet twice a year in Brussels to form a common view on the EPP Group's political perspectives and priorities and to discuss topical European issues. The Presidents of the European Parliament and the European Commission, and European Commissioners if they belong to the EPP family, can be invited to participate at the Summits.
 
EU Affairs Network
The EU Affairs Network assembles EPP Group Members of the European Parliament and the national Members of Parliament spokesperson for European affairs in their political groups. These are either the chairs or vice-chairs of the national parliamentary committees dealing with EU affairs or the spokespersons of the chairs of parliamentary groups. They meet on a regular basis. The aim is to debate current political issues in a more detailed way to further shape the EPP Group’s mutual understanding and ways of working together.
 
Young Members Network
The EPP Group Young Members Network consists of Members of national parliaments from the EPP political family and EPP Group Members of the European Parliament (MEP) up to the age of 36 at the time of their election. It is co-ordinated by Pablo Zalba MEP. A list of around 300 members in national parliaments and the European Parliament has been compiled. Young members discuss important policy challenges for the future.

Read more (EN)

 

 

What the Parliament organises

Joint Parliamentary Meetings
Joint Parliamentary Meetings are meetings on broad political topics which are organised and chaired jointly by the Parliament of the country holding the EU Presidency and the European Parliament. Very often, the topics of the meeting are chosen among the priorities of the EU Presidency. An EPP political family preparatory meeting is organised before each JPM meeting.
 
Joint Committee Meetings
Joint Committee Meetings are meetings on sectoral issues. They are organised and chaired jointly by the relevant Committees of the Parliament of the Member State holding the EU Presidency and the relevant Committee of the European Parliament. Moreover, EP Committees organise hearings, conferences or thematic visits to which representatives from national parliaments are invited, where relevant. The presence of decision-makers from national and European institutions leads, on the one hand, to improved inter-institutional cooperation and, on the other hand, to the creation of a framework that helps disseminate information at national and local levels.
 
COSAC
The “Conference of Community and European Affairs Committees of the Parliaments of the European Union” (COSAC) is a platform for cooperation between committees of the national parliaments dealing with European affairs as well as representatives from the European Parliament. It meets bi-annually.
 
Conference of the Speakers of EU Parliaments
The Conference gathers together Speakers from the Parliaments of EU Member States and the President of the European Parliament. At its annual meetings, the Speakers discuss in general EU matters and in particular inter-parliamentary EU activities.
 
 

Publications

Latest

Life jackets for refugees going to Greece
25.04.2017 - 12:16

Unifying standards for the reception of asylum seekers

Reform of European Asylum System: MEPs want access to the labour market after two months A new law on EU standards for the reception of applicants...
Step up fight against Russian anti-EU fake news
25.04.2017 - 11:15

Step up fight against Russian anti-EU fake news

The EU must combat Russian undercover efforts to hijack politics in the West by coordinating its counterintelligence efforts and by providing more...
Surfing on the Internet
25.04.2017 - 10:56

Europe to invest in free public Wi-Fi

"We need to meet the growing demand of connectivity from Europe’s citizens." "I am pleased that the plans to invest in...
I'm so furious
25.04.2017 - 09:56

Geo-blocking should not obstruct cross-border trade

Internal Market Committee supports ban on unjustified geo-blocking, strengthening the European Commission’s proposal from last year. The EPP...

Highlights of the week

24.04.2017 - 28.04.2017
Turkish flag

Plenary debate on the situation in Turkey

At its mini-Plenary on Wednesday, the European Parliament will discuss the situation in Turkey, particularly focusing on the constitutional...
Scissors cutting ethernet cable connecting globes

Ending unjustified geoblocking

Members of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee will vote on a Report authored by Róża Thun MEP on Tuesday on geoblocking,...
Refugee Camp

Dealing with asylum applications - a clear set of rules needed

Standards for the reception of applicants for international protection will be voted on in the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs...