Int'l Relations : European Union

Interparliamentary Cooperation within the EU

Interparliamentary Cooperation within the EU is conducted within the following framework:

 

EU Speakers’ Conference

The Conference takes place annually and brings together the Presidents/Speakers of EU national parliaments and the President of the European Parliament. It has a coordinative nature, as regulating operational frames of other parliamentary conferences also assessing their activity and business. It was formally recognised in 1999. Since 2007 it has been linked to the six-month presidency of the Council of the European Union and therefore takes place in the country that held the Presidency in the previous semester.

Conference of Chairpersons of European Affairs Committees of EU Parliaments (COSAC Chairpersons)

COSAC Chairpersons meetings are conducted in the beginning of each six-month Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the purpose of preparing COSAC Plenary, also presenting and discussing each Presidency’s agenda priorities

Conference of European Affairs Committees of EU Parliaments (COSAC)

COSAC Plenary is conducting towards the end of the semester to debate and assess the Presidency’s activity and business, together with current issues relating to its scope of interest. It also has the purpose of exchanging best practices regarding EU legislation scrutiny by national parliaments. Upon concluding its works COSAC adopts a contribution to be submitted to EU institutions. COSAC is the only formally recognized (by the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU) forum for interparliamentary cooperation, also having secretarial infrastructure

Conference on Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP)/Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP)

The Interparliamentary Conference on the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CFSP/CSDP) is an inter-parliamentary platform for debate on EU actions in the areas of foreign, security, and defence policies, also aiming at the exchange of good practices and maintaining the dialogue and cooperation among national parliaments and the European Parliament in the areas of CFSP/CSDP. It has no formal or decisive character and conclusions adopted are not binding for national parliaments. National positions expressed are more of a European orientation rather than expressing national interests, yet open to raise issues concerning specific M-S. As this Conference is part of the parliamentary dimension of each Presidency of the Council of the EU, its priorities together with international developments formulate its agenda.

Interparliamentary conference on Stability, Economic Coordination and Governance in the EU (SECG)

This Conference has been established on basis of Article 13 of the Treaty on Stability, Economic Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union (the Fiscal Compact) in order to strengthen cooperation between national parliaments and the European Parliament on relevant issues, also aiming at bolstering democratic legitimacy and accountability in the area of EU decisions making. The Conference takes place twice a year; in the first semester of each year it is co-organized in Brussels by the European Parliament and the Parliament of the M-S holding the rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU, while at the second semester it is organized solely by the latter in the capital of the country.

EUROPOL Joint Parliamentary Scrutiny Group

In congruence with Article 88 TFEU, as introduced by the Lisbon treaty, the adopted on 11 May 2016 Regulation (EU) 2016/794 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) enabled a mechanism for the joint parliamentary scrutiny by the European Parliament and the national parliaments on the activities of the Agency. More specifically, Article 88 TFEU sets the basis for Europol activity monitoring by the European Parliament in cooperation with national parliaments.  The first meeting of the Group took place during the Estonian Presidency to discuss its Rules of Procedure that were adopted in the Groups second meeting, in February 2018, in the frame of the Bulgarian Presidency.

Sectoral Committee Meetings

Meetings of EU M-S  parliamentary Standing Committees as well as EP Committees take place regularly in M-S holding the rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU; Committee Chairmen and/ or  small delegations participate in these meetings, with the purpose of exchanging views on European policy issues or on specific issues pertaining to European law.

Parliamentary Meeting organized by the European Parliament

In the frame of strengthening cooperation on European affairs, the European Parliament organizes interparliamentary meetings on issues of major interest, as well as joint committee meetings with representatives of the counterpart national parliament committees.

The IPEX website contains further information on EU M-S Parliaments’ activities (www.ipex.eu)