EU Parliament

Essay by marcin017University, Bachelor's April 2004

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The EU Parliament


The worlds most far reaching experiment in trans-national democracy. Its very existence is controversial (some politicians have opposed its creation and evolution). Elected for the first time in 1979 is still very young parliament but has developed its role and powers since that time.

At the beginning it was only a consulting body, but since Maastricht and Amsterdam Treaties it has transformed into real legislative parliament. Now it is similar to national parliaments.

It has 626 members in seven political groups and they are elected every five years. 30% of them are woman. It meets and debates in public.


The fundamental powers of EU Parliament are:

· legislative power

· budgetary power

· supervisory power

Its political role is still growing. - DEVELOPMENT

Commission > Parliament > Commission > Council

Legislative power

The normal legislative procedure is co decision. This procedure puts the European Parliament and the Council on an equal footing, and together they adopt legislation proposed by the Commission.

Parliament has to give its final agreement.

Co decision - a legislative procedure introduced by the Maastricht Treaty, which places the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers on an equal footing in the adoption of Community legislation.

Although co decision is the standard procedure, there are important areas in which Parliament simply gives an opinion; these include taxation and the annual farm price review.

Budgetary power

The European Parliament and the Council are the two arms of the budgetary authority. In other words, they share the power of the purse, just as they share legislative power. The preliminary work on Parliament's decision-making in this area is done by its Committee on Budgets in cooperation with the other standing committees.

By exercising its budgetary power the European Parliament expresses its political priorities. It establishes...