| Composition of Convention|
The European Council has appointed Mr Valéry Giscard d'Estaing as
Chairman of the Convention and Mr Giuliano Amato and Mr Jean-Luc Dehaene
The Convention is composed of the main parties involved in the debate on
the future of the European Union. In addition to its Chairman and two Vice-Chairmen,
the Convention is composed of:
- 15 representatives of the Heads of State or Government of the Member States
(one from each Member State),
- 13 representatives of the Heads of State or Government of the candidate
States (1 per candidate State),
- 30 representatives of the national parliaments of the Member States (two from
each Member State),
- 26 representatives of the national parliaments of the candidate States (two
from each candidate State),
- 16 members of the European Parliament,
- 2 representatives of the European Commission.
There are alternates for each full member.
The Economic and Social Committee (three representatives), the Committee
of the Regions (six representatives), the social partners (three
representatives) and the European Ombudsman are invited to attend as observers.
The Laeken Declaration provides for the candidate States to take
a full part in the proceedings without, however, being able to prevent
any consensus which may emerge among the Member States.
The Convention meets in plenary session once a month, at the premises
of the European Parliament in Brussels.
The sessions are open to the public and take place over two half days.
The working groups
The members of the Convention participate in working groups to look into
particular issues more closely.
The Praesidium provides the impetus for the Convention's proceedings.
It consists of the Convention Chairman and Vice-Chairmen, two representatives
of the members of the European Parliament, two representatives of
the Commission, two national parliament representatives and representatives
of the Spanish, Danish and Greek governments (the countries holding the
Presidency of the Union during the Convention).
The Praesidium invites one member of the Convention designated by the
representatives of the candidate countries to all its meetings.
The Convention is assisted by a Secretariat, headed by Sir John Kerr,
former head of the British Diplomatic Service. Annalisa Giannella,
a European civil servant, is his deputy.