Towards an Integrated Administration
Edited by Herwig C.H. Hofmann and Alexander H. Türk
Chapter 4: Comitology: The Ongoing Reform
1 Manuel Szapiro2 COMITOLOGY IN A NUTSHELL Comitology has become an emblematic feature of the EU administrative governance system. ‘Comitology’ committees first developed in the 1960s with a view to assisting the Commission in its exercise of delegated implementing powers.3 The choice to delegate executive competence to the Commission was – and still is – made prima facie for the sake of speed, so as to avoid a legislative procedure which could otherwise last several years. Before adopting an implementing measure, the Commission consults a committee made up of Member States’ (MS) representatives, which it chairs. Thus, it facilitates downstream implementation and application by the national administrations. Committees allow for the participation of MS upstream in the decision-making process, when implementing measures are being drafted. In addition to this vertical integration, comitology committees play a decisive role in the horizontal allocation of competence between the two branches of the Community executive: the Council and the Commission. Under two procedures4 – management and regulatory – if 1 Section IV of this chapter draws in part upon another article by the same author: ‘Comitologie: rétrospective et prospective après la réforme de 2006’, (2006) 3 Revue du droit de l’UE, 545–86. 2 European Commission, Secretariat-general. Professor at the College of Europe in Bruges and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris. Former Deputy Head of the Institutional Affairs Unit, European Commission, SecretariatGeneral. In this capacity, the author participated, for the Commission, in the negotiations on comitology reform and its implementation. The views expressed are...
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