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Study Notes

EU Council of Ministers

AS, A-Level
AQA, Edexcel, OCR, IB

Last updated 22 Mar 2021

The EU Council of Ministers is an inter-governmental institution made up of Ministers, “Permanent Representatives” (i.e. Ambassadors to the EU) and Officials. The Chairmanship of the Council of Ministers (The Presidency) rotates between member states every 6 months.

It meets weekly in Brussels. All the Ministers responsible for a particular area of government meet to take key decisions, i.e. one week all the Agriculture Ministers will meet, the next week all the Finance Ministers, etc. They decide whether laws are adopted, usually by trying to reach a consensus, rather than by voting.

The Council of Ministers follows guidelines drawn up by the European Council and is prompted by Commission proposals. It is the main decision-making body of the EU.

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