The Parliamentary Accountability of EMU Decisions: Between Informality and Fragmentation

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Table of Contents: I. Introduction. – II. Guaranteeing democratic accountability within the EU. – II.1. Democratic accountability in today’s EU. – II.2. Persistent shortcomings in the accountability framework post-Lisbon. – III. Democratic accountability of EMU decisions. – III.1. EMU decision-making procedures and their characteristics. – III.2. Parliamentary involvement in the different fields of EMU: dialogue instead of full involvement. – III.3. Executive and Eurogroup centrality in EMU. – IV. Conclusion: EMU accountability regime is (still) distinct from the standard EU regime… and rightfully so?

Abstract: This Article compares the democratic accountability mechanisms in place in the area of Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) with those existing in other fields of EU law. In so doing, it shows that, although democratic accountability standards have generally been improved following the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, important shortcomings still exist as a result of institutional flaws and practice in EU decision-making. It then shows that the accountability gap that exists in the field of EMU is even deeper owing to the complexity of the procedures in place, and to the informality that characterises some of them as well as some of the decision-making bodies involved (chief of which is the Eurogroup). The Article concludes by making some proposals to improve the current unsatisfactory situation, improvement which will be ever more necessary in post-Covid times.

Keywords: Economic and Monetary Union – democratic accountability – European Parliament – national parliaments – European Semester – democratic deficit.

European Papers, Vol. 6, 2021, No 3, pp. 1415-1435
2499-8249 - doi: 10.15166/2499-8249/532

* Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellow, Sciences Po, Paris,


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