Public access to documents
To help citizens to obtain information about the work of the European Commission and to gain access to documents held by it, the Commission makes a large number of documents available online.
Types of documents available
Official documents and publications
You can also search for official documents produced by the Commission (and other EU institutions), or get access to EU publications.
Documents on EU institutional issues
The DORIE database contains documents from 1946 until today. It includes content relating to institutional issues and intergovernmental conferences that have made changes to the founding treaties.
Register of Commission documents
The register contains a number of documents, with a focus on legislative documents, as well as agendas and minutes of Commission meetings. It includes documents produced since 1 January 2001.
Register of Parliament and Council documents
Other institutions also provide public access to their registers of documents:
Documents more than 30 years old
The historical archives contain documents dating back over 30 years.
Learn more about the Commission's archival policy
You might also find what you are looking for by consulting the open data portal.
Staff and recruitment documents
Access to EPSO recruitment files or to the personal files of Commission staff is regulated by specific access rights. Applicants wishing to obtain access to their own files in these areas are advised to contact EPSO or DG HR directly.
If you're looking for general information about the European Commission, Europe Direct can help you find what you need quickly.
You can reach Europe Direct by phone, using a toll-free number that works from any EU country: 00 800 6 7 8 9 10 11. The lines are open between 09:00 and 18:00.
Email - (reply within 3 working days)
Make a document request
European citizens have a right to request access to documents held by the European institutions. To help them exercise this right, the European Commission makes a large number of documents available online in the Commission register.
Sometimes, documents are listed in the register but are unpublished. You can use this electronic form to request a document.
When can a request be refused?
The Commission has the right to refuse access to documents which, if disclosed, would harm one or several of the public or private interests listed in Regulation 1049/2001.
Please note that some Commission documents may be covered in whole, or in part, by the exceptions to public access defined in the regulation.
According to the Courts, a general presumption of non-disclosure applies for documents relating to
- ongoing EU pilot procedures
- ongoing infringement and audit cases
- state aid cases
- competition cases; documents sent by national competition authorities
- merger cases
- fraud (OLAF) investigations
- court cases
- bids submitted by other tenderers in a procurement procedure
- grant proposals submitted by other candidates
- written questions asked in staff selection procedures