Zagreb – Thomas Christiansen, Professor at Maastricht University and OPAL project coordinator, delivered a lecture on “The Role of National Parliaments in the European Union". The event organized by the European Integration Committee and the Institute for International Relations was held in the Croatian Parliament.
Croatian Parliament Speaker Boris Šprem concluded the time was right to discuss the role of national parliaments in the EU given that Croatian observers were about to take part in the work of the European Parliament. He underlined that Sabor was currently working on a draft legislative proposal regulating the relations between the Government and the Parliament with regard to European affairs once Croatia becomes a member of the EU, as well as on the amendments to the Parliament’s Rules of Procedure that would enable Sabor to function within the framework of the European Union.
Professor Christiansen thinks it important for the Croatian observers to get familiar with the parliamentary proceedings introduced by the Lisbon Treaty. The Lisbon Treaty makes it possible for the national parliaments to be better informed about the European legislation, which is essential for further action. “Before the Lisbon Treaty, the prevailing opinion was that, with regard to the power of legislative and executive authorities, national parliaments were losers of European integrations”, he stated, adding that the Lisbon Treaty changed this perception and created an opportunity for stronger parliamentary action and interparliamentary cooperation.
On behalf of the event sponsors, Daniel Mondekar, Chairman of the European Integration Committee, presented the activities Croatian Parliament had done during the accession process, underlining the next important step to be taken – passing the bill on the relations between the Government and the Parliament and amending the Parliament’s Rules of Procedure.