Rules of Procedure of the European Parliament
8th parliamentary term - March 2019
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CONTENTS
APPENDIX
NOTE TO THE READER
COMPENDIUM OF THE MAIN LEGAL ACTS RELATED TO THE RULES OF PROCEDURE

TITLE VII : SESSIONS
CHAPTER 3 : GENERAL RULES FOR THE CONDUCT OF SITTINGS

Rule 162 : Allocation of speaking time and list of speakers(1)

1.   The Conference of Presidents may propose to Parliament that speaking time be allocated for a particular debate. Parliament shall decide on this proposal without debate.

2.   Members may not speak unless called upon to do so by the President. Members shall speak from their places and shall address the President. If speakers depart from the subject matter of the debate, the President shall call them to order.

3.   The President may draw up, for the first part of a particular debate, a list of speakers that includes one or more rounds of speakers from each political group wishing to speak, in the order of the relative size of those political groups.

4.   Speaking time for this part of a debate shall be allocated in accordance with the following criteria:

(a)   a first fraction of speaking time shall be divided equally among all the political groups;

(b)   a second fraction shall be divided among the political groups in proportion to the total number of their members;

(c)   the non-attached Members shall be allocated an overall speaking time based on the fractions allocated to each political group under points (a) and (b);

(d)   the allocation of speaking time in the plenary shall take into consideration the fact that Members with disabilities might need more time.

5.   Where a total speaking time is allocated for several items on the agenda, the political groups shall inform the President of the fractions of their speaking time to be used for each individual item. The President shall ensure that these speaking times are respected.

6.   The remaining part of the time for a debate shall not be specifically allocated in advance. Instead, the President may call on Members to speak, as a general rule for no more than one minute. The President shall, as far as possible, ensure that speakers who hold different political views and who come from different Member States are heard in turn.

7.   On request, the President may give priority to the Chair and to the rapporteur of the committee responsible, as well as to those Chairs of political groups who wish to speak on their groups' behalf, or to speakers who are deputising for them.

8.   The President may give the floor to Members who indicate, by raising a blue card, their wish to put to another Member, during that Member's speech, a question of no longer than half a minute's duration related to what that Member has said. The President shall only do so if the speaker agrees to the question and if the President is satisfied that this will lead neither to disruption of the debate nor, through the putting of successive questions by raising a blue card, to a gross imbalance in the political group affinities of Members speaking in that debate.

9.   No Member may speak for more than one minute on any of the following subject matters: the minutes of the sitting, procedural motions, or amendments to the final draft agenda or the agenda.

10.   In the debate on a report, the Commission and the Council shall, as a rule, be heard immediately after the presentation, by the rapporteur, of his or her report. The Commission, the Council and the rapporteur may be heard again, in particular in order to respond to the statements made by Members.

11.   Members who have not spoken in a debate may, no more than once per part-session, hand in a written statement of not more than 200 words, which shall be appended to the verbatim report of the debate.

12.   Having due regard to Article 230 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, the President shall seek to reach an understanding with the Commission, the Council and the President of the European Council on an appropriate allocation to them of speaking time.

(1)Rule 162(2) applies mutatis mutandis to committees (see Rule 206(4)).
Last updated: 25 March 2019Legal notice