EU Parliament divides key committee roles among political groups

Andrea Calvello
credit: yahoo

Brussels (Brussels Morning) – The EU Parliament’s political groups have each reserved preferred options for committee chairs, with the centre-right EPP taking top roles and socialists targeting other key positions.

Political groups in the EU Parliament have started dividing key positions ahead of next week’s inaugural session, with the centre-right European People’s Party earmarking pivotal roles.

In a discussion, each political group took turns choosing their preferences for headships of committees and sub-committees, beginning with the largest delegation and applying a proportional formula giving groups more clout relative to their size.

Which positions did the EPP reserve?

The EPP which had the most seats at the EU elections, has booked chairmanships of two leading committees – Industry (ITRE) and Foreign Affairs (AFET). It is also pursuing leadership of the Constitutional Affairs (AFCO), Fisheries (PECH) and Budgetary Control (CONT) committees, and of the sub-committee on Public Health (SANT).

The centre-right body initially implored for the Agriculture (AGRI) committee as well but negotiators swapped it with the conservatives in later talks in conversation for the chairmanship of the Civil Liberties, Justice, and Home Affairs (LIBE), according to groups’ sources.

What committees did S&D target?

The Socialists & Democrats (S&D) requested the leadership of the effective Environment, Public Health, and Food Safety committee, which, alongside ITRE, is the biggest in the EU Parliament with 90 members. The group also strives to chair the International Trade, Economic and Monetary Affairs, Regional Development and Women’s Rights and Gender Equality committees.

What role did the ECR pursue?

The European Conservatives and Reformists, the third-biggest group as of the July 4 deadline for group constitution, aimed for chairmanship of the Budgets (BUDG) committee, required for managing the EU’s long-term budget. The group also pursued leadership of petition committees and obtained AGRI from the EPP in a swap for their initial pick.

What positions did Renew Europe seek?

The fourth most extensive group at the time of the 4 July deadline – its position has subsequently been replaced by Patriots of Europe, now the third largest group –  liberals of Renew Europe sought to chair smaller but significant committees such as Development, Legal Affairs, and the sub-committee on Security and Defence.

Which committees are the Greens and Patriots aiming for?

The Greens are moving for oversight of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection and the Human Rights sub-committee. The Left group is pursuing control of the Tax Matters and Employment and Social Affairs committees. The Patriots group is engaged in the power-sharing despite skipping the July 4 deadline and managed to argue with the Transport and Tourism and Culture and Education committees. 

Each board will formally elect later this month ahead and up to four vice-chairs in its constitutive meeting, constituting the committee Bureau. While candidates have been informally appointed using the proportional d’Hondt method, they can still be voted down by committee members.

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Andrea Calvello is a Journalist at Brussels Morning News. He is covering European Politics, European Parliament, European Council, European Commission and Europe News. He is a highly accomplished journalist and digital specialist with a wealth of experience in the media industry. He holds a Master's degree in Business Administration with a focus on marketing and digital transformation, as well as an Executive Master in Human Resources Management, Development, and Administration. Additionally, he has completed a specialization course in advertising communication, marketing, and Made in Italy communication and digital technologies. Calvello is also a member of the National Order of Journalists and has had a successful career as a TV journalist, bringing his expertise in marketing and digital communication to the world of television broadcasting. His diverse skill set and passion for innovation have set him apart as a dynamic and influential figure in the field of media and communications.