Parliamentary activities

The records of the parliamentary activity constitute the largest collection of European Parliament historical archives, witnessing its activity and its influence on the European Union legislative system.

These records include parliamentary reports, parliamentary questions, motions for resolutions, committees' and delegations' meetings minutes, and Members' interventions during plenary sessions organised by Assembly and Parliamentary term.

All documents issued by the legislative process are open to the public. Some exceptions apply in order to protect the privacy of individuals or commercial interests.

Common Assembly of the European Coal and Steal Community (1952-1958)

© Communautés européennes 1950-1959

Jean Monnet chats with Paul-Henri Spaak – 10/01/1953

On 18 September 1951 the representatives of Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands signed the Treaty of Paris, establishing the European Coal and Steal Community (ECSC). They aimed:

" substitute for historic rivalries a fusion of their essential interests; to establish, by creating
an economic community, the foundation of a broad and independent community among peoples long
divided by bloody conflicts; and to lay the bases of institutions capable of giving direction to their future
common destiny..."

The 78 Members of the Common Assembly of the European Coal and Steal Community were appointed by the Member States for a one year mandate. The role of the Common Assembly was to counterbalance the power of the High Authority controlling its activity. Although the Assembly did not have any legislative or budgetary power it strongly influenced antitrust, trade and social affairs policies.

The records relate to the work of the parliamentary committees and to plenary sittings.

Most of the assembly's work centred around reports drawn up by parliamentary committees, focused on coal- and steel-related issues, such as production, market conditions, the social welfare of steelworkers and miners, transport, trade policy, energy market impacts and competition.

Opening session - 10 September 1952

Interim rules of procedures - 12 September 1952

Ad Hoc Assembly (1952-1954)

© Keystone

Mr. Spaak presents the draft European constitution to Mr. Bidault. Strasbourg, 10 March 1953.

The Ad Hoc Assembly was established by Council decision on 10 September 1952 with the aim to draw up a European constitutional charter by 10 March 1953, a draft treaty establishing a European political community.

The Assembly comprised the 78 Members of the Common Assembly, 8 co-opted Members (3 from Italy, 3 from France and 2 from Germany) and 13 non ECSC Members from the Council of Europe, and held nine meetings from September 1952 to March 1953.

The papers in the fonds outline the first attempt by the six countries that founded the ECSC to establish a 'political community' going beyond mere economic agreements. They reflect the work of the Constitutional Committee, of the four sub-committees and the working groups, each dealing with a specific area in drafting the treaty.

Due to the opposition of the French Parliament to the ratification of the Treaty establishing the European Defence Community, the European political community remained a project.

Draft Treaty embodying the Statute of the European Community - 10 March 1953

Draft Treaty - Speech by M. Paul-Henri Spaak - 9 March 1953

Draft Treaty - Speech by M. Georges Bidault - 9 March 1953

European Parliament (1958-2009)

© European Union PE-EP

Robert Schuman in the hemicycle of Strasbourg.

The European Parliament (formerly Parliamentary Assembly until 1962) was set up in 1958, following the signing of the Treaty of Rome. Its 142 Members were appointed from among the Members of the national parliaments of the European Economic Community Countries.

From a simple role of control and support, the High Authority the European Parliament has expanded its powers over the years to budgetary and legislative matters, becoming co-legislator together with the Council for European legislation.

The Members of the European Parliament have been directly elected by the citizens of the European Union for a five year period since 1979.

For each parliamentary term the documents are structured on the same pattern reflecting the legislative work of the Parliament: parliamentary reports, motions for resolutions, parliamentary questions, plenary debates, minutes of plenary sittings, minutes of committee meetings.
  • European Parliament before direct elections (1958-1979);
  • First Parliamentary term (1979-1984);
  • Second Parliamentary term (1984-1989);
  • Third Parliamentary term (1989-1994);
  • Fourth Parliamentary term (1994-1999);
  • Fifth Parliamentary term (1999-2004);
  • Sixth Parliamentary term (2004-2009)

Formal opening sitting - Speech by Mrs Veil - 18 July 1979

Report on the enlargement of the Community to include Spain and Portugal - 29 July 1985

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