• UKIP MEPs will be among members of the various committees asking questions at the hearings of the Commissioners-designate, starting from Monday, 11 January.
The hearings will be held over a period of seven days with the first five days to be held in Brussels next week, continued in Strasbourg, 18-19 January.
Following these hearings the European Parliament will then vote on the cabinet of commissioners, expected January 26. The commissioners are not voted on individually. The parliament can only approve or reject the whole commission as a body.
The European Commission, as a government of the EU, differs from other governments in that it alone has legislative initiative across the Union. Moreover, the Commissioners are not democratically elected but appointed by member states. Along with the 25,000 EU civil servants in various Directorates General (the equivalent of ministries), they also represent the executive body of the Europe Union.