25 Facts About European Commission


Governmental powers of the Commission have been such that some, including former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt, have suggested changing its name to the "European Government", calling the present name of the Commission "ridiculous", likening it to a misnomer.

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European Commission derives from one of the five key institutions created in the supranational European Community system, following the proposal of Robert Schuman, French Foreign Minister, on 9 May 1950.

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Three bodies, collectively named the European Commission Executives, co-existed until 1 July 1967 when, under the Merger Treaty, they were combined into a single administration under President Jean Rey.

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European Commission headed by Jacques Delors was seen as giving the Community a sense of direction and dynamism.

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However, the Santer European Commission did carry out work on the Treaty of Amsterdam and the euro.

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Under the Treaty of Nice, the first European Commission to be appointed after the number of member states reached 27 would have to be reduced to "less than the number of Member States".

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Barroso European Commission is, in reaction to Euroscepticism, said to have toned down enforcement to increase integration.

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The rules of procedure of the European Commission set out the commission's operation and organisation.

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However, the Council and Parliament may request the commission to draft legislation, though the European Commission does have the power to refuse to do so as it did in 2008 over transnational collective conventions.

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The European Commission has committed EU member states to carbon neutrality by 2050.

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Thus, the European Commission often proposes stricter legislation than other countries.

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In 2006, a toxic waste spill off the coast of Cote d'Ivoire, from a European ship, prompted the commission to look into legislation against toxic waste.

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In particular the European Commission has a duty to ensure the treaties and law are upheld, potentially by taking member states or other institutions to the Court of Justice in a dispute.

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Finally, the European Commission provides some external representation for the Union, alongside the member states and the Common Foreign and Security Policy, representing the Union in bodies such as the World Trade Organization.

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President of the Commission is first proposed by the European Council, following a Qualified Majority Vote, taking into account the latest parliamentary elections (any person from the largest party can be picked); that candidate then faces a formal election in the European Parliament.

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Barroso European Commission took office in late 2004 after being delayed by objections from the Parliament, which forced a reshuffle.

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European Commission is divided into departments known as Directorates-General that can be likened to departments or ministries.

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The rules of procedure of the European Commission set out the Commission's operation and organisation.

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In 2010 the European Commission was sued for blocking access to documents on EU biofuel policy.

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Lack of transparency, unclear lobbyist relations, conflicts of interests and excessive spending of the European Commission was highlighted in a number of reports by internal and independent auditing organisations.

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European Commission has an Action Plan to enhance preparedness against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear security risks as part of its anti-terrorism package released in October 2017.

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European Commission organized a video conference of world leaders on 4 May 2020 to raise funds for COVID-19 vaccine development.

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European Commission issued a new multi-year data plan in February 2020 pushing the digitalization of all aspects of EU society for the benefit of civic and economic growth.

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European Commission is primarily based in Brussels, with the President's office and the commission's meeting room on the 13th floor of the Berlaymont building.

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Additionally, the European Commission has in-house scientific facilities that support it in: Ispra, Italy; Petten, the Netherlands; Karlsruhe, Germany; Geel, Belgium and Seville, Spain.

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