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To the Hungarian Pm in 2007: Polish Proposal on the Voting Rights in the Council: How Should Hungary React?

  • Date Submitted: 10/26/2012 08:17 AM
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ANNEE 2012-2013  
PM BRIEFING                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 KOVACEVIC, Katarina

To the Hungarian PM in 2007: Polish proposal on the voting rights in the Council: how should Hungary react?

Dear Mr. Gyurcsány,

The belated insistence of Poland to reopen the issue of voting weights in the Council is becoming one of the prime obstacles in achieving an agreement on how to reform EU institutions. Previously, it was unanimously agreed in the Constitutional Treaty foresaw a double-majority system under which a majority requires two elements – at least 55% of the member states accounting for at least 65% of the EU’s population.

The new Polish government is pushing a question of the agreement concerning this double-majority formula, accepted by their predecessors in 2004, first proposing that instead of the double-majority there should be used the square root formula, under which only one majority would be needed, the one calculated using the square root of each and every one member state population. However, the Polish government has modified its stance recently, and now is ready to accept the principle of a double-majority approach, but not the one where the second majority element is based on the majority of the population, and rather the one where it is based on the populations' square root.

What would be a Polish goal with this and how it is going to affect the Hungary?

It is widely assumed that the insistence of the Polish government on the square root approach is motivated by the desire to increase its voting power. But is this actually the case? Since the Poland is nearly a big member state (21 member states are smaller than Poland...


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