EIPA in conversation with

The Trio Presidency – 3 countries hand in hand

30 September 2021
13:00 CET

About the round-table

Join us for our unique off-the-record discussions with leading negotiators from EU and national public administrations and the private sector as we look back on the last 14 years of Trio rotations and the influences and impacts thereof going forward with the next Presidency cycle. This round-table is part of the series on Negotiation & Influence.

Background information

The Presidency of the Council of the European Union has always been shared amongst the EU Member States in six-month terms. However, as the Council’s work grew, so too did the responsibility of the role of the Presidency.

Ensuring continuity of work and efficient use of resources were the two main reasons why it was suggested to group Member States together in what is now known as the Trio system. This system encourages three successive Member States to work closely together for the duration of each of their presidencies. Each State shall hold the Presidency for a period of six months. The Member State holding the Presidency shall abide by the 18-month joint programme of work of the Trio while also drafting their own national six-month programme.

The first-ever Trio of Germany, Portugal and Slovenia, who last held their Presidency role from 2007-2008, have just completed their second lap, marking the first full rotation of the 16 Trio groupings. Join us as we reflect on the experience of the last 14 years of the Trio rotations. As the cycle begins again, we ask those involved at the epicentre of the Presidency, Representatives from Academia, the Council Secretariat and Member States what have we learned so far and how the Trio programme has impacted the EU Decision Making Process.

What will the round-table cover?

  • Discover how the Trio groupings have influenced the continuity of the Council’s work and the EU decision-making process.
  • Find out how the Member State experience of the Presidency has changed with the Trio groupings.
  • Evaluate how the Trio programme changed the way we work/influence/negotiate in Brussels as well as engage with the Council.

EIPA moderator(s)


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