The European Parliament participates at several levels in the legislative procedure, according to the procedure defined by the development of Community acts: the European Commission submits to the Council of Ministers a proposal to negotiate an international agreement. The EU High Representative presented the proposal in case the proposed agreement dealt with the common foreign and security policy. Prior to the Treaty of Amsterdam, the procedure contained a large number of legislative provisions, including the creation of the internal market. [3] It was amended by this treaty when its replacement was not agreed by the codecision procedure. The Treaty of Nice limited the procedure to certain aspects of economic and monetary union. [4] The consultation procedure applies in cases where no other procedure is defined. The Council adopts a decision on the basis of a Commission proposal and after seeking the opinion of the European Parliament. The Commission and the Council consider the amendments tabled by Parliament and generally issue an informal opinion in which they prohibit their decision to accept or reject an amendment. The consultation procedure may be either mandatory or optional.

The general framework of the Common Trade Policy is adopted as part of the ordinary legislative procedure. Approval procedures are only used for certain trade agreements. The cooperation procedure (formally referred to as Article 252) was one of the most important legislative procedures in the European Community before the Treaty of Amsterdam came into force. It has been maintained under this treaty, but in only a few areas. It was finally repealed in 2009 by the Lisbon Treaty. The codecision procedure (Article 251 of the EC Treaty) was introduced by the 1992 EU Treaty to strengthen Parliament`s role in the legislative process. There are some differences between the procedures for co-decision and cooperation, in particular: the European Commission submits to the Council of Ministers a proposal to negotiate a trade agreement. The compliant notification procedure is used for most international agreements. For agreements on the euro exchange rate, the consultation procedure is applied. The Council can only approve or reject the agreement, no changes can be made. The European Parliament plays no role in the adoption of specific trade agreements. An exception is provided for a number of policy areas.