On 4 December 2015 the Council approved the compromise text agreed with the European Parliament on a draft regulation on the European Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation and Training (Europol), which paves the way for the formal adoption of the regulation by the co-legislators in the coming months.
Etienne Schneider, Luxembourg Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Internal Security and President of the Council said: "The finalisation of the Europol regulation was a high priority of our Presidency. Our priority was to give a solid legal basis to Europol enabling it to maximize its potential at the service of the member states, and this in full respect of the competences of all the actors involved. This is done today. I am fully satisfied with the result, which is an important step to strengthen police cooperation in Europe".
The new draft regulation is mainly aimed at aligning the current Council Decision on Europol (Decision 2009/371/JHA) with the requirements of the Treaty of Lisbon by setting up the legislative framework of Europol in the regulation and by introducing a mechanism for control of Europol's activities by the European Parliament, together with national Parliaments. In addition it will adapt Europol's external relations to the new Treaty rules.
The new regulation will also ensure a robust data protection regime for Europol, in particular to guarantee that the data protection supervisor of Europol has full independence, can act effectively and has sufficient powers of intervention.
Finally, it will provide Europol with a flexible and modern data management regime and align Europol's governance with the general guidelines applicable to agencies.
As a result, Europol should become more efficient in supporting member states to tackle as effectively as possible terrorism and other forms of serious crime.
The text will now follow the usual legal-linguistic revision before the formal adoption of the Council's position at first reading.
Afterwards, the text will be put for a vote in second reading at a plenary session of the European Parliament.