The Council of the European Union (also known as the EU Council) brings together ministerial representatives of the governments of the EU Member States to adopt law and co-ordinate policy.
Member State governments in turn chair the Council’s meetings and represent the Council. The presidencies of the Council of the European Union traditionally establish a set of broad political priorities and a work programme.
What does it do?
Chairing the meetings
The foreign ministers’ Council has a permanent chairperson – the EU's High Representative for foreign and security policy. All other Council meetings are chaired by the relevant minister of the country holding the rotating EU presidency. For example, any environment Council meeting in the period when Estonia holds the presidency will be chaired by the Estonian environment minister.