Procedure : 2010/2540(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B7-0091/2010

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 09/02/2010 - 4
CRE 09/02/2010 - 4

Votes :

PV 09/02/2010 - 5.1
CRE 09/02/2010 - 5.1
Explanations of votes
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :


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pursuant to Rule 106 of the Rules of Procedure

on a revised Framework Agreement between the European Parliament and the Commission for the next parliamentary term

Conference of Presidents

European Parliament resolution on a revised Framework Agreement between the European Parliament and the Commission for the next parliamentary term  

The European Parliament,

–         having regard to the vote on 16 September 2009 electing Mr Barroso as President of the Commission,


–         having regard to the 'Political Guidelines for the next Commission' presented by the President-elect of the Commission on 3 September 2009,


–         having regard to the statements made by the President-elect of the Commission to Parliament on 15 September 2009 and to the Conference of Presidents on 19 November 2009,


–         having regard to the current Framework Agreement on relations between the European Parliament and the Commission(1),


–         having regard to current practice as regards implementation by the Commission and Parliament of the Interinstitutional Agreement on Better Lawmaking(2),


–         having regard to the experience gained during the last parliamentary term, to the new provisions of the Lisbon Treaty, which entered into force on 1 December 2009 and which establishes a new institutional balance, and to the common understanding reached on 27 January 2010 between the European Parliament Working Party on the revision of the Framework Agreement and the President-elect of the Commission,


–         having regard to Article 17 of the Treaty on European Union and Articles 244 to 248 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU),


–         having regard to Rules 106 and 107 of its Rules of Procedure,


A.       whereas the European Parliament and the Commission need to work closely together to ensure that successful and efficient use is made of the 'Community method', and whereas they have a particular responsibility to ensure that the Union is more than the sum of its parts,


1.        Welcomes the new proposal by the President-elect of the Commission to establish a 'Special Partnership between the European Parliament and the Commission', as suggested in his 'Political Guidelines for the next Commission', with a view to defining and implementing the distinct European interest and laying the first cornerstone of a renewed European Union in the post-Lisbon era;


2.        Calls for a revision at the earliest possible stage of the Framework Agreement between the European Parliament and the Commission, which governs bilateral relations between the two institutions, taking the commitments given by the President-elect of the Commission, Mr Barroso, as a starting point;


3.        In the light of those commitments, calls in particular for the following points to be included in the revised Framework Agreement:


(a)       a guarantee that the Commission will apply the basic principle of equal treatment for Parliament and the Council, especially as regards access to meetings and the provision of contributions or other information, in particular on legislative and budgetary matters;


(b)       implementation of the special partnership between Parliament and the Commission through the following arrangements:


•          the President of the Commission will hold a regular dialogue with the President of the European Parliament on key horizontal issues and major legislative proposals. This dialogue should also include invitations to the President of Parliament to attend meetings of the College of Commissioners;


•          the President of the Commission or a Vice-President is to be invited to attend meetings of the Conference of Presidents and the Conference of Committee Chairs when specific issues related to plenary agenda-setting and legislative and budgetary matters are discussed;


•          meetings to be held on an annual basis between the Conference of Presidents and the Conference of Committee Chairs and the College of Commissioners to discuss relevant issues, including the preparation and implementation of the Annual Work Programme;


•          in the context of its work on the preparation and implementation of EU legislation, including soft law, the Commission will provide full information and documentation on its meetings with national experts; it may also invite Parliament experts to attend those meetings;


(c)       a commitment by the Commission to report on the practical follow-up to any legislative initiative requests within three months following the adoption of a legislative initiative report pursuant to Article 225 of the TFEU; the Commission shall come forward with a legislative proposal at the latest after one year or shall include the proposal in the next year's annual work programme; if the Commission does not submit a proposal, it shall give a detailed explanation of the reasons to the European Parliament;


(d)       a commitment to close cooperation at an early stage between Parliament and the Commission on any legislative initiative requests emanating from citizens' initiatives;


(e)       a commitment by Parliament and the Commission to agree on key changes in preparation for future negotiations with the Council of Ministers on an adaptation of the agreement on better law-making to the new provisions of the Lisbon Treaty and on, inter alia, changing the practice of implementation of the current agreement, among others:


•          impact assessments shall be conducted under the responsibility of the Commission, following a transparent procedure which guarantees an independent assessment; impact assessments shall be published in due time, taking into consideration a number of different scenarios, including a ‘do nothing’ option, and shall in principle be presented to the relevant parliamentary committee during the consultation period with national parliaments under the Lisbon Treaty;


•          in areas where Parliament is usually involved in the legislative process, soft law shall be used where appropriate and on a duly justified basis, after consultation of Parliament;


•          in order to promote the simplification of Union law, the use of recasting as a standard procedure shall be guaranteed, where possible and relevant, or replaced by a codification of the legal act within six months of its final adoption;


•          in order to ensure better monitoring of the transposition and application of Union law, the Commission and Parliament shall endeavour to include compulsory correlation tables and a binding time limit for transposition, which in directives should not normally exceed a period of two years;


•          the Commission shall make available to Parliament summary information about all infringement procedures based on the letter of formal notice, including, if so requested by Parliament, on a case-by-case basis and respecting the rules on confidentiality, on the issues concerned by the infringement procedure;


(f)       agreement to the following demands in order to improve the accountability of the executive:


•          whenever the Commission comes forward with a revision of the Code of Conduct for Commissioners, it will seek Parliament’s opinion;


•          whenever Parliament comes forward with a revision of its Rules of Procedures concerning relations with the Commission, it will seek the opinion of the Commission;


•          if Parliament asks the President of the Commission to withdraw confidence in an individual Member of the Commission, he will seriously consider whether he should request that Member to resign, in accordance with Article 17(6) of the EU Treaty; the President shall either require the resignation of that Member or explain his refusal to do so before Parliament in the following part-session;


•          if the President of the Commission intends to reshuffle the portfolios in the Commission during its term of office, pursuant to Article 248 of the TFEU, he shall inform Parliament in due time for the procedure to be started for the relevant parliamentary consultation with regard to those changes; the President’s decision to reshuffle the portfolios can take effect immediately;


•          where a Commissioner is to be replaced, the President of the Commission will give serious consideration to the result of the consultation of Parliament before giving his consent to the decision of the Council pursuant to Article 246 of the TFEU;


•          the Commission will support Parliament in the forthcoming negotiations on the European External Action Service (EEAS) with a view to guaranteeing the full accountability of that service, including a transparent procedure for the nomination of special representatives and ambassadors;


•          the Commission will support Parliament in the forthcoming negotiations on the EEAS with a view to continuing and reinforcing the ‘Community approach’ in development policy, including the programming of development aid instruments, in particular the European Development Fund, which should remain within the remit of the Commission and in respect of which it should be fully accountable to Parliament;


•          a Question Hour with Commissioners, including the Vice-President for External Relations / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, and following the model of the existing Question Hour with the President of the Commission, shall be introduced with the aim of reforming the existing Question Time;


(g)       nominees for the post of Executive Director of regulatory agencies should come to parliamentary committee hearings;


(h)       a commitment by the Commission for reinforced association with Parliament through the provision of immediate and full information to Parliament at every stage of negotiations on international agreements (including the definition of the negotiation directives), in particular on trade matters and other negotiations involving the consent procedure, in such a way as to give full effect to Article 218 of the TFEU, while respecting each institution’s role and complying in full with new procedures and rules for the safeguarding of the necessary confidentiality;


(i)        at international conferences, the Commission, in view of Parliament’s extended powers under the Lisbon Treaty and in order to guarantee an efficient flow of information, shall, at Parliament’s request, facilitate the granting of observer status to the Chair of Parliament’s delegation in relevant meetings and shall for this purpose guarantee access to EU facilities for Parliament’s delegations;


(j)        a commitment to improve current arrangements related to programming by means of a number of measures, including:


•          in principle, the presentation of selected key initiatives of the Commission, first in plenary, and only afterwards to the public;


•          a commitment on the part of the Commission to initiate rapidly, in accordance with Article 17 of the EU Treaty, the ‘Union’s annual and multiannual programming with a view to achieving interinstitutional agreements’;


•          meetings on an annual basis between the College of Commissioners and the Conference of Presidents and the Conference of Committee Chairs prior to adoption of the Annual Work Programme, including forthcoming proposals for simplification, major soft law initiatives and withdrawals in order to prepare the debate and seek a common understanding between the Commission and Parliament;


•          the principle that the Commission should explain when it cannot deliver individual proposals foreseen in the annual programme or when it departs from it;


4.        Calls on Parliament and the Commission to carry out a review of the functioning of the future Framework Agreement by the end of 2011;


5.        Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the new Commission.



OJ C 117 E, 18.5.2006, p. 123.


OJ C 321, 31.12.2003, p. 1.

Last updated: 18 May 2010Legal notice