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Parliamentary questions
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12 June 2018
Answer given by First Vice-President Timmermans on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-002290/2018

1. The Commission considers that democratic scrutiny is a cornerstone of European democratic governance. The institutional architecture of the Union is based on a dual legitimacy on both national and European levels. Accountability should be ensured at the level where the respective executive decision is taken, while taking due account of the level where the decision has an impact.

2. The Commission sees an important role of national Parliaments in parliamentary scrutiny also regarding decisions taken at European level. This is why the Juncker Commission strives for close relations with national Parliaments, in particular by Members of the College debating important proposals and initiatives in the national Parliaments. Since the beginning of this Commission's mandate, more than 780 visits and meetings with members of national Parliaments by Members of the College have taken place. As regards the involvement, by Member States' Governments, of their respective Parliaments before deliberations in the Council of the EU and in the European Council, it is for each Member State to determine, in its constitutional framework, the most appropriate means to ensure such parliamentary scrutiny.

3. The Commission generally supports the Ombudsman's commitment to enhancing transparency of the European legislative process and will continue its engagement with the co-legislators to enhance its transparency. In so far as the question from the honourable Member is related to the findings of the Ombudsman's strategic inquiry(1) on the transparency of the Council legislative process, it is for the Council to reply to that question.

(1)https://www.ombudsman.europa.eu/en/cases/summary.faces/en/94906/html.bookmark; inquiry OI/2/2017/TE.

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