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Consultation procedure

Under Article 289 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), consultation is a special legislative procedure, as a form of exception to the ordinary legislative procedure in Article 294. It requires the Council to take into account the European Parliament's opinion and, where indicated in the Treaties, those of the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions and the European Central Bank.

However, the Council is not actually bound by the Parliament's position but only by the obligation to consult it. The absence of such consultation makes the act illegal and capable of annulment by the Court of Justice.  Furthermore, when the Council intends to substantially amend the proposal, it is required to consult Parliament again.

This procedure is applicable in a limited number of policy areas, such as internal market exemptions and competition law, as well as financial matters and aspects of intellectual property and administrative issues. It is also used for the adoption of instruments such as recommendations and opinions issued by the Council and the Commission.