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The assent procedure is one of the legislative procedures of the European Community, the first of the three Pillars of the European Union.

It was introduced by the Single European Act. Under this procedure, the Council of the European Union must obtain Parliament's assent before certain decisions can be made. Acceptance ("assent") requires an absolute majority of votes cast.

The right of the European Parliament to reject or indefinitely delay the proposal is absolute. There is no formal provision for amendments by the European parliament, but in fact the Parliament can produce an interim report making recommendations for modifications, and a conciliaion has also been introduced.[1]

The areas included under the assent procedure are:

Following the adoption of the Treaty of Amsterdam, sanctions imposed on an EU Member State for a serious and persistent breach of fundamental rights requires Parliament's assent under Article 7 of the EU Treaty.

In its opinion on the 2000 Intergovernmental Conference, the European Commission argued in favor of extending this procedure to apply to the conclusions of agreements having global economic and commercial implications.


  1. ^ Craig, Paul; Grainne De Burca , P. P. Craig (2006). EU Law: Text, Cases and Materials (4th ed. ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 117. ISBN 978-0-19-927389-8.  


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