What is the role of the European Affairs Committee?
The European Affairs Committee has the important task of scrutinizing the Danish Government's European Union policy.
The Danish Accession Act from 1972 details the basic principles governing the Danish Parliament’s scrutiny of European policy. The act states that the European Affairs Committee and the Sectoral Committees are instrumental in overseeing parliamentary scrutiny of the Government’s EU policy.
The European Affairs Committee has the important task of scrutinizing the Danish Government's European Union policy. Comprised of 29 members, the Committee considers items on the agenda of the Council of the Minister, while also ensuring there is no majority in the Danish Parliament that is against the Government's position. The Committee also has the role of articulating opinions to the EU's institutions as well as debating cases that are currently pending at the European Court of Justice.
In consideration of EU matters in the European Affairs Committee, the Government presents issues to the Committee orally either for information or to secure its proposed negotiating position or mandate. The Government will then update the Committee about matters of considerable importance but present its proposed mandate in the case of decisions of major significance. The Government has the power to decide which category the EU matters are determined.
As one of the Danish Parliament’s 23 Standing Committees, the European Affairs Committee was permanently established in 1973. The Danish Parliament was the first national Parliament in Europe to establish a negotiating mandate system. This system states that the Government must receive negotiating mandates from a parliamentary Committee before consulting in the Council.