More transparent and balanced interest representation: Commission adopts new expert group rules

Today, the Commission has adopted new rules on how it selects the advisory expert groups which provide external expertise to help inform the policy-making process. The Decision provides a single set of rules and principles aimed at increasing transparency, avoiding conflicts of interest and ensuring a balanced representation of interests. The new rules are binding on all Commission departments. First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said: “When we design rules and policies we need the help of outside expertise to help us get it right. Citizens rightly expect this to be done in a transparent and balanced way. Thanks to the measures we are taking today, the Commission will benefit from high quality expertise while avoiding possible conflicts of interests, and the public will be able to hold us to account. Today’s decision follows fruitful consultations with Members of the European Parliament, the European Ombudsman and representatives of civil society organisations, who are key partners in delivering a transparent approach to EU policy-making. This is another step forward in changing the way ‘Brussels’ works.” More information is available in this Press Release, and the Commission Decision and its Annexes and Communication are also available online.