Main institutions

The main institutions of the EU

There are three groups of people who together make new laws:

    The European Commission that proposes laws
    The European Parliament that debates the proposals
    The Council of Ministers that approves (or rejects) what is passed by the Parliament

The European Commission

Its main job is to draft new laws.

Its other jobs are to:

    Ensure member states apply the laws
    Apply the laws on fishing
    Watch over competition in business


The European Parliament

Its main job is to make laws in agreement with the Council of Ministers

751 members (73 from UK), called MEPs

Elected in member states every five years

Recognised political party groups:

European Peoples Party
Socialists & Democrats
Conservatives and Reformists
Alliance of Liberal Democrats
European United Left
Greens
Europe of Freedom & Democracy

It doesn’t form a government


Council of the European Union

Its main job is to decide on laws

Made up of ministers from member states

Separate meetings for different subjects, e.g.

    Justice and home affairs
    Finance
    Agriculture
    Environment
    Consumer affairs

Votes by Qualified Majority Vote
Entrance to the atrium of the European Council