Council of the European Union

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Council of the European Union

Council of the European Union and the Treaties of the European Union

Description of Council of the European Union provided by the European Union Commission: The Council of the European Union (the “Council of Ministers” or the “Council”) is the Union’s main decision-making institution. It is composed of the ministers of the Member States and thus constitutes the EU institution in which the governments of the Member States are represented. The Council, together with the European Parliament, acts in a legislative and budgetary capacity. It is also the lead institution for decision-making on the common foreign and security policy (CFSP), and on the coordination of economic policies (intergovernmental approach). The Council meets in different configurations, bringing together the Member States’ ministers responsible for the areas concerned: general affairs and external relations, economic and financial affairs, employment, social policy, health and consumers, competition, etc. The Council’s headquarters are in Brussels, where it meets several times a month (in certain months, the meetings are held in Luxembourg). Each Member State in turn presides over the Council for six months. Decisions are prepared by the Committee of Permanent Representatives of the Member States (Coreper), assisted by working parties of national government officials. In most cases, the Council, acting on a proposal from the European Commission, decides jointly with the European Parliament under the co-decision procedure. Depending on the subject, the Council takes decisions by simple majority, qualified majority or unanimously. In most cases, however, it acts by a qualified majority (agriculture, single market, environment, transport, employment, health, etc.). The European Constitution currently being ratified provides for new arrangements for the Council Presidency. The Presidency of the different configurations will be held, for 18 months, by a team of three Member States. Each State will hold the Presidency for a period of six months, assisted by the other two States on the basis of a common programme. In addition, the General Affairs Council will be chaired by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, a new post created by the Constitution. Lastly, the Constitution has radically changed the qualified majority voting system in the Council.

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Council of the European Union and the Treaties of the European Union

Description of Council of the European Union provided by the European Union Commission: The Council of the European Union (the “Council of Ministers” or the “Council”) is the Union’s main decision-making institution. It is composed of the ministers of the Member States and thus constitutes the EU institution in which the governments of the Member States are represented. The Council, together with the European Parliament, acts in a legislative and budgetary capacity. It is also the lead institution for decision-making on the common foreign and security policy (CFSP), and on the coordination of economic policies (intergovernmental approach). The Council meets in different configurations, bringing together the Member States’ ministers responsible for the areas concerned: general affairs and external relations, economic and financial affairs, employment, social policy, health and consumers, competition, etc. The Council’s headquarters are in Brussels, where it meets several times a month (in certain months, the meetings are held in Luxembourg). Each Member State in turn presides over the Council for six months. Decisions are prepared by the Committee of Permanent Representatives of the Member States (Coreper), assisted by working parties of national government officials. In most cases, the Council, acting on a proposal from the European Commission, decides jointly with the European Parliament under the co-decision procedure. Depending on the subject, the Council takes decisions by simple majority, qualified majority or unanimously. In most cases, however, it acts by a qualified majority (agriculture, single market, environment, transport, employment, health, etc.). The European Constitution currently being ratified provides for new arrangements for the Council Presidency. The Presidency of the different configurations will be held, for 18 months, by a team of three Member States. Each State will hold the Presidency for a period of six months, assisted by the other two States on the basis of a common programme. In addition, the General Affairs Council will be chaired by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, a new post created by the Constitution. Lastly, the Constitution has radically changed the qualified majority voting system in the Council.

Resources

See Also

Popular Treaties Topics

  • Treaties of the United Nations (UN)
  • Types of Treaties
  • International Treaties
  • Famous Treaties
  • Law of Treaties
  • Numbered Treaties

Hierarchical Display of Council of the European Union

European Union > EU institutions and European civil service > EU institution
European Union > European Union law > EU act > Opinion (EU) > Opinion of the Council
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Power of initiative
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Supervisory power
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Power of decision
International Relations > International affairs > International affairs > International meeting > Ministerial meeting

Council of the European Union

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European Union > EU institutions and European civil service > EU institution > Council of the European Union
European Union > European Union law > EU act > Opinion (EU) > Opinion of the Council > Council of the European Union
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Power of initiative > Council of the European Union
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Supervisory power > Council of the European Union
Politics > Political framework > Political power > Power of decision > Council of the European Union
International Relations > International affairs > International affairs > International meeting > Ministerial meeting > Council of the European Union

See also

  • Council of European Ministers
  • Council of the European Communities
  • Council of the Union
  • EC Council
  • EU Council
  • European Union Council

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