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POSITION PREPARATION PROCEDURE

Position preparation procedure – EU Group - Working Group on European Affairs – Working groups

 

A vital part of the coordination of European affairs is aimed at achieving cross-sectoral alignment of positions to be defended by Slovenian representatives who attend meetings of working parties, committees or ministerial formations of the EU Council and the European Council.


The coordination system involves competent authorities, central coordination units, the Permanent Representation in Brussels, drafting working groups for the preparation of positions in the process of adopting EU legislative proposals and other acts, the Working Group for European Affairs, the EU Group, the Government, and the National Assembly.


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) as the central government coordinator of European affairs ensures in particular a procedurally correct preparation and submission of positions on EU proposals in the Council decision-making process.


The MFA designates a competent ministry or government office to draft a position on each proposal of the European Union. At the same time, the participating ministries and the competent drafting group for the preparation of positions are designated.


Alignment and endorsement of positions are reached by means of EU-portal, government IT-system, as well as other coordination mechanisms, such as the drafting working groups, the Working Group for European Affairs or inter-ministerial meetings. EU-portal is operated by the MFA. The MFA also puts forth initiatives for the use of additional coordination mechanisms. 

   
In principle, the competent ministry prepares a position on the first draft of the proposed EU act. The position is later adequately amended, according to conclusions drawn in discussions within the working bodies of the EU Council and in line with the new findings or altered circumstances. The competent ministry publishes the draft position within EU-portal. If no objections to the draft position have been submitted within the set deadline or if no member of the Government opposes the published position, the draft position becomes the official position of the Republic of Slovenia.


The Government or its committees discuss the draft positions only if the described coordination has not been successful, or if the competent authority or a member of the Government requests a discussion at a session of the Government or one of its committees, or if the draft position is to be presented by national representatives at a ministerial meeting of the EU Council or in the European Council.


When a position refers to a legislative proposal that falls, according to its content and pursuant to the Constitution and national laws, within the competency of the Slovenian parliament, the Secretary-General  of the Slovenian Government submits it to the National Assembly for deliberation. The position is then discussed by the parliamentary committees on EU affairs or foreign policy.     


Slovenian representatives attending meetings of the EU Council are obliged to defend the position that has been approved and published on EU-portal as the official position of the Republic of Slovenia.

 

 

Coordination and drafting of positions concerning accession negotiations


The preparation and coordination of positions on EU acts regarding accession negotiations of candidate countries differ from the procedure of preparation and coordination described above as the documents concerned are usually classified. Accordingly, the preparation and coordination of positions are conducted within an inter-ministerial working group established for that particular purpose. This working group consists of Directors-General of all ministries and government offices.