On Wednesday 5 December 2012 Mr Maroš Šefčovič, one of the Vice-Presidents of the European Commission, will pay a visit to the House of Representatives. Mr Šefčovič will be welcomed by the Speaker of the House, Ms Anouchka van Miltenburg, at 9.45 am. Next, he will meet with the standing committee on European Affairs from 10.30 to 11.30 am.
The subject of the meeting is the draft priority list the House of Representatives has drawn up on the basis of the annual work programme of the European Commission. This list contains the proposals the House will focus on in particular next year. The list also states whether proposals will be subject to parliamentary reservation or to a subsidiarity test. These are the two tools the House has at its disposal to check the work of the Government properly or to notify the European Commission that the House is of the opinion that the Commission has no authority to draft legislation on a certain subject.
Every year a meeting with a European Commissioner on the EU work programme is held. "This is very useful. We get information straight from the horse's mouth and at the same time we can ask for an explanation of certain items if we wish so" says Rayomd Knops, chairman of the standing committee on European Affairs. The information gathered from the meeting with Mr Maroš Šefčovič will be used by the committee for a debate with the minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Frans Timmermans. After this debate the priority list will be voted on in a plenary sitting.
Mr Maroš Šefčovič has been Vice-President of the European Commission since 9 February 2010. As a Commissioner he is responsible for Inter-Institutional Relations and Administration and Health and Consumer Policy.