Vice President Maroš Šefčovič hosts stakeholder hearing on European Citizens' Initiative
Commission Vice President Maroš Šefčovič today opened a stakeholder hearing on the European Citizens' Initiative, the results of which will feed into the preparation of the legal proposal on the ECI which the Commission will publish shortly after Easter. Mr Šefčovič described the ECI, introduced by the Lisbon Treaty, as "an initiative that is all about taking the EU outside the 'Brussels beltway' and giving it full democratic expression". It will allow one million citizens from a number of Member States to call directly on the Commission to make proposals on an issue which is important to them. The public consultation, launched in November, generated 323 contributions from citizens, organisations and public authorities, showing considerable interest across Europe in this new legal right. Mr Šefčovič underlined two particular issues raised in the consultation process: the need for a simple, common and reliable system for the verification of signatures, and a system to ensure the admissibility of particular initiatives. Based on the input from today's event, which is being streamed on the internet, and from the public consultation, the Commission will now finalise its legislative proposal. Mr Šefčovič hopes it will be possible to have the ECI on the statute books by the end of the year.
For more information, see speech: Stakeholder Hearing on the European Citizens' Initiative [96 KB]
Contact: Michael Mann: 02 299 9780