As of the 4th of May 2022, the 38th Edition of MEC inaugurated its start! After a grueling 12 hours of travel by bus, the delegation from the European School of Brussels I and III, arrived at the location of Munich. This year’s event was held at the Science Congress Center. This edition of MEC lasted until the 6th of May.
Having left Brussels at 5am, both the delegations of EEB1 and EEB3 continued to rest while traveling. They arrived at Munich around 16h, left their belongings, and hurried on to the auditorium where ES Munich Deputy Director, Mr. Duggen, welcomed them. The students turned delegates, were specifically chosen for their capabilities, responsibility and eagerness. Every participating school chose a group of students, who then had to read and research the minister and the country they represented.
MEC is a simulation of the European Council, where EU member states are represented by a delegation. This delegation contains delegates, who are ministers of different sectors within their country. The delegates are placed in these councils with other delegates who are managing the same sector, representing their own EU country. There are 5 councils: the European/General Council (1), Foreign affairs/Defense (2), Finance and Economy (3), Interior affairs (4), Environment and Energy (5).
For example, the minister of Finance and Economy of France will be positioned in council which deals with financial and economic affairs of all EU member states (3). In each council, a legal treatise is created by the commissioner, containing different policies and protocols pertaining a certain area. These are the proposal texts. The scope of the councils is for the delegates to go over these texts – within their councils – and for each delegate representing their respective country, to push for the best interests of their own country, within the overall interest of the European Union.
When the council is in session, delegates make amendments and propositions to the text. These are then discussed, and a vote is passed. There are three standard votes: the simple majority, the qualified majority (QMV) and the unanimous vote. Most of the time, alliances are created, and relationships are curated to benefit all parties. This happens when both delegates have common interest in something.
Each council has a commissioner. These are also delegates who are representing their EU country. In most councils the commissioner changes on a 5-year basis. Though they are the chair of a council, they have no advantage over the other EU member states, as a commissioner’s job is to moderate the debate.
On the 4th, after the closure of the welcoming ceremony, the delegates met their council and commissioners for a brief meeting. They discussed protocols, procedures and decorum. Once the delegates were settled in their hotel rooms, dinner was announced. In the dinner hall, students were able to relax and mingle. The scheming and plotting of erecting alliances start way before MEC is even inaugurated, as during the weeks prior the students could contact possible allies.
The following days of debate give us insight on the inner workings of each council. On how, sometimes, agreements are an impossibility, and the only way forwards is by negotiating. Throughout this 38th edition of MEC we will see how much progress is made in the councils and by what means.