Parliament and Commission reach an agreement on joint transparency register

The High Level Group of the European Parliament and the European Commission concluded on 10 November 2010 its discussions on a joint "Transparency Register". This new common register for organisations and individuals engaged in EU policy making and policy implementation will merge both institutions systems.

Parliament and the European Commission have been working for some time on a new joint register of lobbyists, which will merge the Parliament's current "lobby" register with the Commission's online lobby register launched by the Commission in June 2008. The common "Transparency register", which is foreseen to be available online by June 2011, will offer a one stop shop both to registering organisations and to all citizens wishing to know who is engaged in such activities.

Beyond the information already made public in the existing systems, the new mechanism will provide additional information such as the number of individuals involved in all the activities relating to the register, and the level of EU resources received by the registrar. It will also provide clarifications regarding the eligible activities falling under the scope of the register, and the processes by which complaints will be handled. The common register should ensure the widest participation of all categories of operators while respecting their different or specific identities. The aim is to offer the public a full perspective on the wide diversity of stakeholders that contribute to the discussions in the European decision making processes and policy implementation.

In order to improve the information available, the Commission has already begun random checks of new registrations in its current register and will soon draw the attention of all (current and new) registrars to frequently made mistakes in the registration process.