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Consultative bodies



The European Economic and Social Committee

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is a consultative body allowing EU institutions to take into account, upon planning and making decisions, the interests of various economic and social groups in society. The opinions of the Committee are not binding, but are nevertheless a valuable source of expert knowledge and experience, helping legislative bodies determine the impact of the Commission's proposals on groups affected by these proposals. The EESC is composed of 344 representatives of organised civil society, in particular representatives of workers, employers, craftsmen and traders, farmers, small and medium enterprises, retailers, independent professions, consumers, environmentalists and other members of the public.

The seat of the European Economic and Social Committee is in Brussels. The members of the Committee usually work in their respective countries and convene in Brussels only for Committee meetings. Members receive no extra payment for their work in the Committee, except for daily allowances and the reimbursement of expenses.

Official website of the European Economic and Social Committee


The Committee of the Regions

The Committee of the Regions has a consultative role in matters of regional or local importance, as it consists of representatives of regional and local governments and bodies who either serve a term as elected representatives or answer to an elected assembly. The members of the Committee are not bound by any instructions, and none of the members may be simultaneously a member of the European Parliament.

The Council of the EU and the Commission must consult the Committee of the Regions in relation to the following matters: economic and social cohesion, trans-European networks, transport, employment, education and vocational training, social policies, environment, culture and healthcare.

The Committee of the Regions is composed of 344 members and an equal number of alternate members. The members and alternate members are nominated on application by member states for a four-year term. They may serve more than one term.

The list of members and alternate members established on application by the member states is adopted by the Council acting by a qualified majority. At the end of the mandate on the basis of which they were appointed, the members' term in office on the Committee ceases automatically; a replacement is appointed following the same procedures for the remainder of the term.

All national delegations reflect the political, geographical and regional/local balance in their respective states. The Committee meets at its seat in Brussels.

Official website of the Committee of the Regions


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Date: 28.12.2007