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European Council: European Commission

Volume 472: debated on Thursday 21 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with his EU counterparts on the proposed relationship between the President of the European Council and officials of the European Commission. (185538)

Heads of State and Government, supported by Foreign Ministers, reached agreement on all the key institutional issues in the Lisbon treaty, including the role of full-time President of the European Council, at the 2007 June European Council.

The treaty makes clear that the President of the European Council

“shall ensure the preparation and continuity of the work of the European Council in co-operation with the President of the Commission, and on the basis of the work of the General Affairs Council”.

The Commission President provides political guidance for the Commissioners and is the Commission’s principal representative in dealings with other EU institutions and with external bodies. Significant decisions by the Commission are taken collectively by the College of Commissioners.