Sunday 9 December 2007

Consolidated Treaty of Lisbon

People may be for or against, or undecided, but all have a right to readable information on
the Reform Treaty of the European Union, to be named the Treaty of Lisbon.

Quite a number of people seem to be looking for consolidated versions, with the new Treaties inserted into the existing ones. Some might even be ready to base their opinions on facts.

Therefore, I am going to repeat information which can be found in different blog postings since the middle of October.

The official, reader-unfriendly version of the Treaty of Lisbon consists of two documents of the intergovernmental conference (IGC 2007), dated 3 December 2007: the Final Act (CIG 15/07) and the Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community (CIG 14/07), posted on the web site of the Council.

The intergovernmental conference 2007 has accomplished its task. The signing ceremony takes place in Lisbon on 13 December 2007.

The official text is hard to read, since it consists of amendments. In order to see the Treaties as a whole, you need to compare with the existing Treaties.


The citizens of the European Union need reader-friendly, or at least a little bit less unreadable, versions of the new Treaties. In a Union in which decisions are taken as openly as possible and as closely as possible to the citizen (Article 1, paragraph 2, of both the present and the amended EU Treaty) and which observes the principle of the equality of its citizens, who shall receive equal attention from its institutions, bodies, offices and agencies (Article 8 of the amended EU Treaty), consolidated versions of the Treaty of Lisbon should be available to every citizen in his or her language.

Until now, the institutions of the European Union or the governments of the Member States have not made consolidations available. Luckily, other bodies have published consolidated versions, in four of the 23 official languages of the EU.

The Irish Institute of European Affairs (IIEA) and professor Steve Peers (Statewatch Observatory on the Constitution/Reform Treaty) have published consolidations in English. The French National Assembly (Assemblée nationale) has produced a French version and the think-tank Real Instituto Elcano a Spanish one.

The web addresses are: English English French Spanish

Are there other consolidations, which I have not noticed, yet? Are there plans for other language versions?

I am grateful for information you might have.

Ralf Grahn


  1. It is also, in my mind, a remarkably dangerous thing to not publish a consolidated official text.

    The refusal of the EU to publish such a text will be used in the referendum debate in my country.

  2. Regardless of the ratification procedure, publishing consolidated versions of the new Treaties in every official language of the EU is a basic requirement.

    The Treaties are the most important documents of the European Union, since they form the legal basis for every legal act and action.

    Openness, transparency, accountablility, equality and reader-friendly information all come into play.

    In my view, the intergovernmental (European) Council is the main culprit, since this is the institution responsible for the IGC 2007.

    But if the Council does not publish more readable versions, the individual governments could and should step in, without delay.


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