The enhancement of the European Parliament: Effects on Policies
The European Parliament (EP) was established by the Treaty of Rome in 1957. In the original institutional design of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), the EP was not intended to play any key major roles. The EP was one of the oldest common institutions where it began as the Common Assembly. However, since 1987, the responsibility of the EP in the policy-making process has been progressively improved over the years. Such improvements were mainly due to the several treaties revision. Even though the EP does not formally propose EU legislation, it takes on an important function in the EU’s legislative and budgeting processes. The EP works closely together with two other main EU institutions which are the European Commission and the Council of ministers.
In 1952, the current EP was found as the Common Assembly of ECSC and then it was renamed as the European Parliamentary Assembly in 1958. And finally in 1962, it became known as the European Parliament in 1962. Just as its name evolved, the EP’s power in the EU evolved as well. The common assembly consisted of 78 nominated national parliamentarians from the initial 6 ECSC founding member states. The current EP has 734 elected representatives from the 27 member states. EP is the only elected institution. The work of the EP is carried out by well-established system of 20 permanent committees. These committees cover most area of the EU policy.
Initially, the EP along with ECJ was seen as an institution of control and scrutiny and not of decision making. With that, the EP was given restricted and precise roles and responsibilities. The EP could discuss policies and scrutinize their implementation. It could also dismiss the High Authority (commission) for