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In May 2022, the European Parliament adopted a draft legislative act proposing to repeal the 1976 European Electoral Act and replace it with a new Council regulation on the election of the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) by direct universal suffrage. The aim is to harmonise a number of rules applicable to European elections, which are currently a combination between the common principles under the European Electoral Act and the different national rules implementing them. Harmonisation would ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the AFCO Committee, examines the EU participatory system and its existing participatory channels against mounting citizens’ expectations for greater participation in EU decision-making in the aftermath of the Conference on the Future of Europe. It proposes the creation of a permanent deliberative mechanism entailing the participation of randomly selected citizens ...

Regulation (EU) 2019/1896 transformed Frontex into the European Border and Coast Guard Agency and considerably increased its tasks, powers, responsibilities and budget. The regulation also gave the European Parliament a range of tools affording it oversight of the agency's activities. In addition to budgetary discharge, these include an obligation for the agency to provide Parliament with information, a key role for Parliament in appointing the agency's executive director, and attendance, on invitation ...

The European Commission's President, Ursula von der Leyen, unveiled a package of measures to curb energy prices, which skyrocketed in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and stressed the EU’s unwavering solidarity with Ukraine, in her annual State of the Union address delivered on 14 September. The plan envisages cuts in the use of electricity across the bloc, a cap on the revenues of companies which produce electricity at low cost, aid for companies and individuals hit by the energy crisis ...

The e-CODEX system is the technological backbone of the digitalisation of EU judicial cooperation in both civil and criminal matters. It comprises a package of software products that allow for secure digital communication between courts, and between citizens and the courts, in particular enabling the secure exchange of judicial documents. The project, launched in 2010 with EU funding, has until now been managed by a consortium of Member States and other organisations, and coordinated by the Ministry ...

The highlight of the September 2022 plenary session was the annual address by the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, on the State of the European Union (SOTEU). Ukraine's First Lady, Olena Zelenska, was present for SOTEU and the debate that followed, where Russian aggression in Ukraine was again an important point. A 'This is Europe' debate was held with the Prime Minister of Finland, Sanna Marin. Members also debated Council and Commission statements on the EU response to ...

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen's third State of the Union address, scheduled for 14 September 2022, will be delivered at a time when the European Union and its Member States are facing unprecedented geopolitical and economic challenges. Rising energy prices and accelerating climate change are testing the EU's resilience. On a more positive note, the recovery and resilience plans of most Member States have been approved, and the Next Generation EU spending programme will provide ...

This EPRS paper analyses progress in attaining the policy agenda set out by Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, and her College of Commissioners. It looks in particular at the state of play in respect of delivery on its six key priorities. Concretely, EPRS finds that, ahead of the 2022 State of the Union address, of the over 500 initiatives foreshadowed by the von der Leyen Commission on taking office or since (521), almost two thirds (330) have already been submitted and, ...

During the September 2022 plenary session, Parliament is expected to debate and vote the report concerning the Commission proposal to recast the Regulation on the statute and funding of European political parties and foundations. The report was adopted by the Committee on Constitutional Affairs (AFCO) on 13 July 2022 – with 18 votes for, 4 against and 2 abstentions – and includes 36 amendments to the original proposal.

How the EU Treaties are modified

Briefing 30-08-2022

With the Conference on the Future of Europe now at an end, a new phase has started: that of following up on the more than 320 recommendations it produced. This process is however a complicated one. Legally, ways to implement the Conference's recommendations may require changes to the European Union (EU) Treaties, which is a complex and challenging process. Politically, debating how to implement reforms and deciding to what extent to modify the EU legal system may require intense negotiations. The ...