The appointment procedure and key dates


According to Article 45 of the protocol to the Accession Treaty the new Members of the Commission shall be appointed by the Council, by common accord with the President of the Commission and after consulting the European Parliament. Article 45 constitutes the formal legal basis for the new Commissioners’ appointment procedure and contains an explicit acknowledgement of the Parliament’s role which was not contained in previous accession treaties.

Key dates:

26 September 2006: Adoption by the Commission of its monitoring report on Bulgaria and Romania, in which it concludes that the two countries will be in a position to accede to the Union on 1 January 2007, as provided in the Accession Treaty.
17 October 2006: General Affairs and External Relations Council endorses Commission's conclusion.
26 October 2006:

Decision of the Conference of Presidents on the general framework of the hearings and adoption of the questionnaire (general part).

Weeks 43-44: Indication of names of candidates by the Bulgarian and Romanian governments to the Council, in agreement with the President of the Commission; formal designation of candidates by the Council and formal consultation of Parliament; attribution of portfolios by the President of the Commission.
9 November 2006:

Adoption of the questionnaires (specific part) by parliamentary committees.

27 November 2006:

Hearings before the competent parliamentary committees, followed by evaluation meetings to be held in camera ("huis clos").

28 November 2006:Conference of Presidents - closure of the hearings.
11-14 December 2006:Vote on the new Commissioners by the European Parliament.
before end of December 2006: Formal appointment of the two new Commissioners by the Council.
1 January 2007: Accession of Bulgaria and Romania to the EU.
Date to be confirmed: Oath before the Court of Justice of the two new Commissioners.

The new Commissioners’ mandate will expire at the end of October 2009 at the same time as the Commissioners in office.