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Romanian EU Presidency

The Presidency of the Council of the EU is shared among the national governments of the 28 Member States, transferring from one Member State to another every six months, on 1 January and 1 July each year. The office of the Presidency comes with significant responsibility: the host Member State chairs meetings of the Council of the EU, one of the EU’s major decision-making bodies, during its term. In addition, the Presidency is responsible for ensuring that Member States work in harmony, negotiating compromises when necessary, and at all times acting in the interest of the EU as a whole.

The Presidency’s programme of work is shared by three Member States (the ‘Presidency trio’) over an 18-month period. The Presidency sets out detailed goals that it wants to achieve during its period of office and, with the other Presidency trio members, longer-term objectives that could not realistically be achieved in only six months.

A new Presidency trio begins its period of office on 1 January 2019. Romania hosts the Council Presidency for the first term, from 1 January to 30 June, followed by Finland and Croatia. The three countries will work together to implement their 18-month joint programme.

The Romanian Presidency’s priorities are putting the needs of the European people at the forefront of its activities and focusing on the wider issues of:

  • innovation, sustainable development, employment and social rights;
  • keeping Europe safe and secure;
  • strengthening Europe’s position at the global level;
  • promoting Europe’s common values, including social justice, democracy, respect and tolerance.

The priorities are based on the Commission’s objectives as well as on issues identified by the previous Presidency trio (Estonia, Bulgaria and Austria). Each state is also given the opportunity to emphasise topics that it believes are particularly relevant.

Visit the website of the Romanian presidency

Watch the video ‘What is the Council presidency and how does it work?’