ECI participatory democracy? | Corporate Europe Observatory

The European Parliament approved last week the final deal on the European Citizens Initiative (ECI), which obliges the European Commission to consider proposals supported by the signatures of one million Europeans. The final deal is a compromise between the Commission and Council, who insisted on administrative hurdles that would have made it very difficult to collect the signatures needed, and MEPs who wanted fewer obstacles. But how much of a boost is this new instrument for democracy and citizens’ power?

Introduced as a result of the Lisbon Treaty, the Citizens’ Initiative has even been referred to as a “tool for participatory democracy”. But now that the final text on the process has been approved, it is clear that this is a wildly exaggerated claim for an instrument that merely obliges the European Commission to consider proposals that have received backing of one million signatures from at least seven Member States. Continue reading…

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