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Fifty days away from the European Council's Laeken Summit, the Committee of the Regions (CoR) approved a resolution on the preparation for this Council meeting and the next Inter-Governmental Conference in 2004 at an extraordinary meeting on October 26. The resolution should be adopted without debate at the CoR's plenary session on November 14-15. The rapporteur, Edmund Stoiber, Minister President of Bavaria, is appealing for a broad public debate on the EU's objectives and the importance of the subsidiarity and proportionality principles as the rule for a transparent division of powers. Among other demands made in the resolution, the Committee says that it will be necessary to add a procedure that authorises intensive participation by the regions in the discussion process. It says that it is in favour of the creation of a Convention charged with the co-ordination of the preparatory phase and argues that its composition should include two members of the Committee.The CoR also proposes a re-evaluation of the role...

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