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The Treaty on European Union (2007) is one of the primary
Treaties of the European Union The Treaties of the European Union are a set of Treaty, international treaties between the European Union (EU) Member state of the European Union, member states which sets out the EU's Constitution, constitutional basis. They establish the variou ...
, alongside the
Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set of rules, norms, and standards generally recognized as bi ...
(
TFEU The Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) is one of two treaties forming the Treaties of the European Union, constitutional basis of the European Union (EU), the other being the Treaty on European Union (TEU; also referred to as ...
). The TEU forms the basis of
EU law European Union law is a system of rules operating within the member states of the European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a whic ...
, by setting out general principles of the EU's purpose, the governance of its central institutions (such as the Commission, Parliament, and Council), as well as the rules external, foreign and security policy.


History

While the current version of the TEU entered into force in 2009, following the
Treaty of Lisbon The Treaty of Lisbon (initially known as the Reform Treaty) is an international agreement that amends the two treaties A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, als ...
(2007), the older form of the same document was implemented by the
Treaty of Maastricht The Treaty on European Union, commonly known as the Maastricht Treaty, is the foundation treaty of the European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe ...
(1992).


Provisions

After the preamble the consolidated treaty text is divided into six parts.


Title I: Common Provisions

The first deals with common provisions. Article 1 establishes the European Union on the basis of the European Community and lays out the legal value of the treaties. Article 2 states that the EU is "founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities". The member states share a "society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail". Article 3 then states the aims of the EU in six points. The first is simply to promote peace, European values and its citizens' well-being. The second relates to free movement with external border controls in place. Point 3 deals with the
internal market The European Single Market, Internal Market or Common Market is a comprising the 27 of the (EU) as well as – with certain exceptions – , , and through the Agreement on the , and through . The single market seeks to guarantee the fre ...
. Point 4 establishes the euro. Point 5 states the EU shall promote its values, contribute to eradicating poverty, observe human rights and respect the
charter of the United Nations The Charter of the United Nations (also known as the UN Charter) is the foundational treaty A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, also known as public internation ...
. The final sixth point states that the EU shall pursue these objectives by "appropriate means" according with its competences given in the treaties. Article 4 relates to member states' sovereignty and obligations. Article 5 sets out the principles of conferral,
subsidiarity Subsidiarity is a principle of social organization that holds that social and political issues should be dealt with at the most immediate (or local) level that is consistent with their resolution. The ''Oxford English Dictionary'' defines subs ...
and proportionality with respect to the limits of its powers. Article 6 binds the EU to the
Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (CFR) enshrines certain civil and political rights, political, economic, social and cultural rights, social, and economic rights for European Union (EU) Citizenship of the European Union, ...
and the
European Convention on Human Rights The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR; formally the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms) is an international convention to protect human rights and political freedoms in Europe. Drafted in 1950 by t ...
. Article 7 deals with the suspension of a member state and article 8 deals with establishing close relations with neighbouring states.


Title II: Provisions on democratic principles

Article 9 establishes the equality of national citizens and
citizenship of the European Union Citizenship of the European Union is afforded to all citizens of European Union member states. It was formally created with the adoption of the 1992 Maastricht Treaty, at the same time as the creation of the European Union The European ...
. Article 10 declares that the EU is founded in
representative democracy Representative democracy, also known as indirect democracy, is a type of democracy where elected persons represent Represent may refer to: * Represent (Compton's Most Wanted album), ''Represent'' (Compton's Most Wanted album) or the title song ...
and that decisions must be taken as closely as possible to citizens. It makes reference to
European political parties A European political party, known formally as a political party at European level and informally as a Europarty, is a type of political party A political party is an organization that coordinates candidates to compete in a country's electio ...
and how citizens are represented: directly in the Parliament and by their governments in the Council and European Council – accountable to national parliaments. Article 11 establishes government transparency, declares that broad consultations must be made and introduces provision for a petition where at least 1 million citizens may petition the Commission to legislate on a matter. Article 12 gives national parliaments limited involvement in the legislative process.


Title III: Provisions on the institutions

Article 13 establishes the
institutions Institutions, according to Samuel P. Huntington, are "stable, valued, recurring patterns of behavior." Institutions can refer to social mechanism, mechanisms which govern the behavior of a set of individuals within a given community, and are id ...
in the following order and under the following names: the
European Parliament The European Parliament (EP) is one of three Legislature, legislative branches of the European Union and one of its seven Institutions of the European Union, institutions. Together with the Council of the European Union, it adopts European legi ...

European Parliament
, the
European Council The European Council (informally EUCO) is a collegiate body that defines the overall political directions and priorities of the European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are loc ...
, the
Council A council is a group of people who come together to consult, deliberate, or make decisions. A council may function as a legislature A legislature is a deliberative assembly with the authority In the fields of sociology Sociology is t ...

Council
, the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch The executive is the branch of government exercising authority in and holding Moral responsibility, responsibility for the governance of a State (polity), state. The executive executes a ...

European Commission
, the
Court of Justice of the European Union The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) (french: Cour de justice de l'Union européenne or "''CJUE''"; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European lang ...
, the
European Central Bank The European Central Bank (ECB) is the prime component of the Eurosystem The Eurosystem is the monetary authority In finance Finance is the study of financial institutions, financial markets and how they operate within the financia ...

European Central Bank
and the
Court of Auditors The European Court of Auditors (ECA) (French: ''Cour des comptes européenne'') is one of the seven institutions of the European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of Member state of the European Union, membe ...
. It obliges co-operation between these and limits their competencies to the powers within the treaties. Article 14 deals with the workings of Parliament and its election, article 15 with the European Council and its president, article 16 with the Council and its configurations and article 17 with the Commission and its appointment. Article 18 establishes the
High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy The High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (HR/VP) is the chief co-ordinator and representative of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) within the European Union (EU). The position is currently held by ...
and article 19 establishes the Court of Justice.


Title IV: Provisions on enhanced co-operation

Title 4 has only one article which allows a limited number of member states to co-operate within the EU if others are blocking integration in that field.


Title V: General provisions on the Union's external action

Chapter 1 of this title includes articles 21 and 22. Article 21 deals with the principles that outline EU foreign policy; including compliance with the
UN charter The Charter of the United Nations (also known as the UN Charter) is the foundational treaty of the United Nations, an intergovernmental organization. It establishes the purposes, governing structure, and overall framework of the United Nations S ...
, promoting global trade, humanitarian support and global governance. Article 22 gives the European Council, acting unanimously, control over defining the EU's foreign policy. Chapter 2 is further divided into sections. The first, common provisions, details the guidelines and functioning of the EU's foreign policy, including establishment of the
European External Action Service The European External Action Service (EEAS) is the diplomatic service Diplomatic service is the body of diplomat A diplomat (from grc, δίπλωμα; romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the scien ...
and member state's responsibilities. Section 2, articles 42 to 46, deal with military co-operation (including mutual defence). On 17 November 2015, France called other member states for military assistance, on the basis of the Article 42. This was the first time the article had ever been applied and all of the member states were reported to respond in agreement (ibid). However at least one member state (Finland) made a conclusion that due to conflicting national law, military assistance was excluded.


Title VI: Final provisions

Article 47 establishes a
legal personality In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by ...
for the EU. Article 48 deals with the method of treaty amendment; specifically the ordinary and simplified revision procedures. Article 49 deals with applications to
join the EU
join the EU
and Article 50 with withdrawal. In the aftermath of the
Brexit Brexit (; a portmanteau of "British exit") was the Withdrawal from the European Union, withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU) and the European Atomic Energy Community (EAEC or Euratom) at 23:00 31 January 2020 Green ...

Brexit
vote in the UK on 23 June 2016, the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
formally invoked Article 50 in March 2017, giving notice that it would leave the EU within two years. Article 51 deals with the protocols attached to the treaties and article 52 with the geographic application of the treaty. Article 53 states the treaty is in force for an unlimited period, article 54 deals with ratification and 55 with the different language versions of the treaties.


See also

*
EU law European Union law is a system of rules operating within the member states of the European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a whic ...
*
Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set of rules, norms, and standards generally recognized as bi ...


Notes


External links


Full text of the treaty at EUR-Lex
{{EU treaties and declarations