The European Union Affairs Committee
(Komisja do Spraw Unii Europejskiej)
Legal base: "The Act of 8 October 2010 on the cooperation of the Council of Ministers with the Sejm and Senate in matters relating to the Republic of Poland membership of the European Union" and the Standing Orders of the Sejm.
Composition: The Committee should be composed of no more than 46 Members (10% of the Sejm). The composition should reflect the composition of the Chamber.
The current European Union Affairs Committee was established on 17 November 2011. Prior to Poland’s accession to the EU there was a special European Integration Committee during the II and III term of the Sejm from October 2001 to 31 July 2004. The committee is empowered to express opinions on behalf of the Chamber on EU legislative proposals to be adopted by the Council of Ministers and on the negotiating positions of the Polish Government in relation to these. The opinions of the committee should constitute a basis for the position of the Government. If the Government decides to deviate from the opinion of the committee, it is obliged to explain the reason why.
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The European Union Affairs Committee was set up by the Senate on 19 May 2004. But already, prior to Polish accession of the EU, a number of special committees responsible for monitoring European integration and Poland’s accession negotiations had been established. The first such “European Integration Committee” was created in March 1993.
The European Affairs Committee may express opinions to the government concerning its negotiating positions in the Council. If the government decides not to seek the opinion of the Committee, it must explain why it fails to seek the opinion of the committee. However the government is not compelled to base its negotiations on the opinion of the committee.
The government is obliged to seek the opinion of the European Affairs Committee of the Senate and present its negotiation position before it can start negotiating in the Council of Ministers.
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