ENS Guide to European web sites

Council of the European Union

The Council of the EU is the institution representing the member states' governments. Also informally known as the EU Council, it is where national ministers from each EU country meet to adopt laws and coordinate policies.. The Presidency of the Council is held for six months by each member state on a rotational basis. The various acts of the Council are: regulations, directives, decisions, common actions, common positions, recommendations, opinions, conclusions, declarations, resolutions. The number of votes (between 3 and 29) that each Member State can cast is set by the Treaties which also define cases in which a simple majority, qualified majority or unanimity are required. Qualified majority is reached if the following 2 conditions are met: if a majority of Member States approves (in some cases a 2/3 majority); a minimum of 72.3 % of the total is cast in favour of the proposal. The EP is an active participant in the legislative process: on a broad range of issues, Community legislation is adopted jointly by the EP and the Council (so–called «co-decision»).














11 - 15 March 2018
Munich, Germany


30 September - 04 October 2018
Prague, Czech Republic