The European Union has based most of its major decision making centres and several smaller organisations in Brussels. This amounts to over 40,000 officials. Together the European Parliament, the European Commission, the European Council and the Council of the European Union take crucial decisions that impact the lives of 500 million European citizens. The European Economic and Social Committee and the European Committee of Regions had an important advisory role.
The European Parliament
The European Parliament is directly elected by European citizens every five years. It is one of the key legislative EU institutions, along with the Council of the European Union.
The European Council
The European Council is a summit meeting at which EU leaders make decisions about policy priorities and important initiatives. It is housed, along with the Council of the European Union in the stunning new Europa building.
The Council Of The European Union
The Council of the European Union, informally known as the Council of Ministers, is the forum of national ministers from each EU country meet to adopt laws and coordinate policies.
The European commission
The European commission protects the interest of the European Union as a whole. It proposes new laws to the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union, and ensures that EU laws are properly adopted in every EU member state. The emblematic Berlaymont building on Schuman roundabout houses the European
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC)
The European Economic and Social Committee is an advisory body of the European Union. It was established in 1957 and provides, on request, the larger institutions (the European Commission, the Council and the Parliament) with expert advice on policy. In addition, it also provides, on its own initiative, advice on subjects that it deems worthy of attention. But above all, the EESC acts as a bridge between the European institutions and the so-called ‘civil society’.
The European Committee of regions (ECR)
The European Committee of regions is an advisory organism made up of representatives from local and regional governments from the EU and gives local and regional governments a platform to give their opinion on EU legislation.
You can find a comprehensive overview of the institutions in Brussels-Europe the figures.