The European Movement International welcomes the opening of the investigation by European Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly, on ‘informal trilogues’, which is in line with the movement’s existing policy on ‘more democracy’.
‘Informal trilogues’ are increasingly used in EU decision-making, substituting the legislative procedure foreseen in the Treaties and making the process less accessible for parliamentarians, representative associations and civil society organisations. Currently, over 80% of EU legislation is concluded by so-called ‘first reading agreements’ following informal negotiations between the Council of Ministers, the Commission and the European Parliament.
The European Movement International calls on the EU legislators to limit ‘informal trilogues’ to exceptional cases and provide full transparency in the process. For the European Movement International, civil dialogue and transparency in EU legislation must be part of the European democracy.
Jo Leinen MEP, President, European Movement International, said:
“The European Union has to be able to react quickly to current developments and legislate accordingly. ‘Informal trilogues’ must, however, not come at the expense of democracy, transparency and the involvement of civil society in the legislative process, which are fundamental principles enshrined in the Treaties. First reading agreements between the legislators, the European Parliament and the Member States represented by the Council, should be limited to cases where time is of essence and be conducted in a transparent manner. The European Parliament, as well as the European Commission, already make sure their position in the negotiations is public, which is not the case for the Council. The introduction of specific criteria to determine the cases eligible for trilogues could reduce the usage of this procedure to necessary cases.”