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Number of Commissioners

Question écrite de M. Georg MAYER - Commission européenne

Question de M. Georg MAYER, M. Harald VILIMSKY,

Diffusée le 20 mars 2024

Subject: Number of Commissioners

At present, the number of Commissioners stands at 27 – one for each Member State – although this is not a requirement at all. Already in 2014, there were calls to reduce this number by one third, and this was even enshrined in the Union Treaties. The EPP’s electoral manifesto has already revealed an intention to add another Commissioner in the future: a Commissioner for Defence.

1. Does the Commission intend to reduce the number of Commissioners in the next Commission?

2. Why have no steps been taken since 2014 towards reducing the number of Commissioners, despite an agreement being reached to do so?

3. What does the Commission think about the EPP’s intention? Can it imagine increasing the number of Commissioners further?

Submitted:21.3.2024

Réponse - Commission européenne

Diffusée le 11 juin 2024

Answer given by Executive Vice-President Šefčovič on behalf of the European Commission (12 June 2024)

1. and 2. The number of Commissioners is decided by the European Council by unanimous vote, not by the Commission. Article 17(5) of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) provides that, as from 1 November 2014, the Commission shall consist of a number of members corresponding to two thirds of the number of Member States, unless the Council, acting unanimously, decides to alter this number.

The Council decided on 22 May 2013 (1) that the Commission should consist of a number of members equal to the number of Member States. The Council confirmed that Decision on 28 November 2019 (2). Any change to that Decision would again require a unanimous vote by the Council.

3. Pursuant to Article 17(6) TEU, the President of the Commission is responsible for the internal organisation of the Commission. It will be for the future President-elect to decide on the allocation of portfolios to the candidate Commissioners.

1 ∙ ⸱ European Council Decision 2013/272/EU of 22 May 2013 concerning the number of members of the European Commission.

2 ∙ ⸱ European Council Decision (EU) 2019/1989 of 28 November 2019 appointing the European Commission.



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