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The Role of National Parliaments in EU Decision-making and the Euro Crisis: The Case of Finland

Thursday, March 31, 2016, 3:30 pm – 5:10 pm

The role of national parliaments in EU decision-making and the euro crisis – the case of Finland

 CEUR guest lecture by Mr Peter Saramo

Chair: Uwe Puetter


Parliamentarism in the member states of the European Union faces a great challenge. The ever more complex decision-making at the European level seems to have pushed national parliaments to the background, a development which was further amplified by the euro crisis. Despite increased attention for the role of national parliaments in EU policy-making, there is still little known about the actual processes which unfolded at the national level and how they were linked to EU-level policy action in the context of the euro crisis. National parliaments struggled to scrutinize the national and EU executive actors as information was often constrained and decisions had to be made within very short periods of time.

In his lecture, Peter Saramo, Counsel of the Grand Committee of the Finnish Parliament, outlines the powers of the Finnish parliament and its chief EU affairs committee. He reviews concrete examples of the committee’s engagement with the euro crisis during which the Finnish parliament became one of the most vocal critics of EU-level financial assistance for crisis-hidden member states. Saramo discusses the complex relationship between parliament, government and EU institutions during the period of 2010-2014.


Mr Peter Saramo (b. 1956) holds an Ll.M. from Helsinki University. After serving as a prosecutor and on a district court in Finland, Mr. Saramo served with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) from 1982 to 1990 as legal officer in New Delhi, Kuala Lumpur and Bonn. Mr Saramo joined the secretariat of the Parliament of Finland in 1990. He served as secretary of the committee that drafted the constitutional amendments necessitated by Finland’s accession to the European Union. Since 1994 Mr Saramo serves as clerk to the Finnish Parliament’s Grand Committee and Director of the parliament’s EU Secretariat.


Download the lecture poster here.