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Party of European Socialists

Party of European Socialists
President Sergei Stanishev (Bulg.)
Founded 1973 (Confederation)
9–10 November 1992 (Party)
Headquarters Rue du Trône/Troonlaan 98, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
Youth wing Young European Socialists
Ideology Social democracy[1][2]
Political position Center-left
International affiliation Socialist International,
Progressive Alliance
European Parliament group Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats
Colours Red
Political foundation Foundation for European Progressive Studies
Politics of the European Union
Political parties

The Party of European Socialists (PES) is a social-democratic European political party.[3] The PES comprises national-level political parties primarily from member states of the European Union (EU) and other nations of the European continent. The PES member parties are themselves members of the Socialist International. The Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) is the political group in the European Parliament of the PES. The PES also operates in the Committee of the Regions (in the PES Group in the Committee of the Regions) and the European Council. The PES is currently led by Sergei Stanishev, former Prime Minister of Bulgaria.

The PES includes major parties such as the British Labour Party, the Italian Democratic Party (PD), French Socialist Party (PS), German Social Democratic Party (SPD), but has member parties in almost all EU states.


  • Name 1
  • History 2
    • 1960s 2.1
    • 1970s 2.2
    • 1980s 2.3
    • 1990s 2.4
    • 2000s 2.5
    • Brussels Congress, 28–29 September 2012 2.6
  • Presidents 3
  • Organisation 4
  • PES in the European institutions 5
    • Overview of the European institutions 5.1
    • European Parliament 5.2
    • European Commission 5.3
    • European Council 5.4
    • European Council and Council of Ministers 5.5
      • Overview 5.5.1
    • Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe 5.6
    • Committee of the Regions 5.7
  • Member parties 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


The party's English name is "Party of European Socialists". In addition, the following names are used in other languages:

  • Albanian: Partia Socialiste Europiane
  • Bosnian: Partija europskih socijalista
  • Bulgarian: Партия на европейските социалисти
  • Croatian: Stranka europskih socijalista
  • Czech: Evropská strana sociálně demokratická
  • Danish: De Europæiske Socialdemokrater
  • Dutch: Partij van de Europese Sociaaldemocraten
  • Estonian: Euroopa Sotsialistlik Partei
  • Finnish: Euroopan sosialidemokraattinen puolue
  • French: Parti socialiste européen
  • German: Sozialdemokratische Partei Europas
  • Greek: Ευρωπαϊκό Σοσιαλιστικό Κόμμα
  • Hungarian: Európai Szocialisták Pártja
  • Icelandic: Flokkur evrópskra sósíalista
  • Irish: Páirtí na Sóisialaithe Eorpach
  • Italian: Partito del Socialismo Europeo
  • Maltese: Partit tas-Soċjalisti Ewropej
  • Latvian: Eiropas Sociāldemokrātiskā partija
  • Lithuanian: Europos socialistų partija
  • Macedonian: Партија на европските социјалисти
  • Norwegian: Det europeiske sosialdemokratiske partiet
  • Polish: Partia Europejskich Socjalistów
  • Portuguese: Partido Socialista Europeu
  • Romanian: Partidul Socialiștilor Europeni
  • Serbian: Партија европског социјализма
  • Slovak: Strana európskych socialistov
  • Slovene: Stranka evropskih socialistov
  • Spanish: Partido Socialista Europeo
  • Swedish: Europeiska socialdemokratiska partiet
  • Turkish: Avrupa Sosyalistler Partisi

In March 2014 following the congress in Rome, the PES added the

  • Party of European Socialists, official website
  • Parliamentary Group of the Party of European Socialists, official website
  • European Youth Guarantee campaign, official website
  • PES Group in the Committee of the Regions, official website

External links

  1. ^ Parties and Elections in Europe: The database about parliamentary elections and political parties in Europe, by Wolfram Nordsieck
  2. ^ Richard Dunphy (2004). Contesting Capitalism?: Left Parties and European Integration. Manchester University Press.  
  3. ^ Robert Thomson (15 September 2011). Resolving Controversy in the European Union: Legislative Decision-Making Before and After Enlargement. Cambridge University Press. pp. 14–.  
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Northern European Social Democracy and European Integration, 1960-1972. Moving towards a New Consensus?".  
  6. ^ a b c "History". Socialist Group website. Retrieved 11 November 2007. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Together for the Europe we need!". Zita Gurmai, President of PES Woman. 26 July 2012. Retrieved 8 August 2012. 
  9. ^ "PES Statutes adopted by the 8th Congress". PES. December 2009. Retrieved 8 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "Ethics in politics : For strong moral conduct through a strong moral code". PES Presidency declaration. 14 April 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2012. 
  11. ^ "Our common candidate for 2014. PES Resolution". PES Council. 24 November 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2012. 
  12. ^ "Former PES Presidents". PES website. Retrieved 21 January 2008. 
  13. ^ a b c d "How does PES work?". PES website. Retrieved 7 November 2007. 
  14. ^ "A New Direction for Progressive Societies. Resolution N. 2 A new way forward. Adopted by the 8th PES Congress". PES. 8 December 2009. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  15. ^ Phillips, Leigh (12 August 2010). "Socialists want US-style primaries for commission president candidate". EU Observer. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  16. ^ Mahony, Honor (7 May 2007). "Brussels struggles with communication policy.". EU Observer. Retrieved 12 May 2007. 
  17. ^ "PES Group Members". Retrieved 2012-12-17. 
  18. ^ "PES Members". PES website. Retrieved 7 November 2007. 


State Name abbr. European MPs
 Austria Social Democratic Party of Austria SPÖ
5 / 18
 Belgium Socialist Party PS
3 / 8
Socialist Party – Differently sp.a
1 / 12
 Bulgaria Bulgarian Socialist Party BSP
4 / 17
 Croatia Social Democratic Party of Croatia SDP
2 / 11
 Cyprus Movement for Social Democracy EDEK
1 / 6
 Czech Republic Czech Social Democratic Party ČSSD
4 / 21
 Denmark Social Democrats A
3 / 13
 Estonia Social Democratic Party SDE
1 / 6
 Finland Social Democratic Party of Finland SDP
2 / 13
 France Socialist Party PS
12 / 74
 Germany Social Democratic Party of Germany SPD
27 / 96
 Greece Panhellenic Socialist Movement PASOK
2 / 21
 Hungary Hungarian Socialist Party MSZP
2 / 21
Hungarian Social Democratic Party MSZDP
0 / 21
 Ireland Labour Party Labour
0 / 11
 Italy Democratic Party PD
31 / 73
Italian Socialist Party PSI
0 / 73
 Lithuania Social Democratic Party of Lithuania LSDP
2 / 11
 Luxembourg Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party LSAP
1 / 6
 Malta Labour Party PL
3 / 6
 Netherlands Labour Party PvdA
3 / 26
 Norway Labour Party Ap
 Poland Democratic Left Alliance SLD
4 / 51
Labour United UP
1 / 51
 Portugal Socialist Party PS
8 / 21
 Romania Social Democratic Party PSD
14 / 32
 Slovakia Direction – Social Democracy Smer-SD
4 / 13
 Slovenia Social Democrats SD
1 / 8
 Spain Spanish Socialist Workers' Party PSOE
14 / 54
 Sweden Swedish Social Democratic Party SAP
5 / 20
 United Kingdom Labour Party Labour
20 / 73
Social Democratic and Labour Party SDLP
0 / 73
Associated parties
State Name abbr.
 Albania Socialist Party of Albania PSS
 Bosnia and Herzegovina Social Democratic Party of Bosnia and Herzegovina SDP
 Bulgaria Party of Bulgarian Social Democrats PBS
 Iceland Social Democratic Alliance Samf.
 Macedonia Social Democratic Union of Macedonia SDSM
 Montenegro Democratic Party of Socialists of Montenegro DPS
Social Democratic Party of Montenegro SDP
 Serbia Democratic Party DS
  Switzerland Social Democratic Party of Switzerland SP/PS
 Turkey Republican People's Party CHP
Peace and Democracy Party BDP
Observer parties
State Name abbr.
 Andorra Social Democratic Party PS
 Israel Israeli Labor Party עבודה
Meretz מרצ
 Latvia Social Democratic Party "Harmony" SDPS
Latvian Social Democratic Workers' Party LSDSP
 Moldova Democratic Party of Moldova PDM
 Morocco Socialist Union of Popular Forces USFP
 Northern Cyprus Republican Turkish Party CTP
 Palestine Fatah فتح
 San Marino Party of Socialists and Democrats PSD
 Tunisia Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties FDTL
[18]With 32 members it is the only political party to have a member from every EU state, although not all of them have elected MEPs.

Member parties

PES has 118 members in the Committee of the Regions as of 2012.[17]

Committee of the Regions

Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe

State Governing parties Affiliated EU party Population
 Germany Christian Democratic Union
Social Democratic Party
Christian Social Union
80,585,700 29
 France Socialist Party
Radical Party of the Left
Europe Ecology – The Greens
65,397,900 29
 Italy Democratic Party
New Centre-Right
Civic Choice
Union of the Centre
60,782,688 29
 Romania Social Democratic Party
Conservative Party
National Union for the Progress of Romania
21,355,800 14
 Netherlands People's Party for Freedom and Democracy
Labour Party
16,730,300 13
 Greece New Democracy
Panhellenic Socialist Movement
Agreement for the New Greece
11,290,900 12
 Belgium Socialist Party
Christian Democratic and Flemish
Reformist Movement
Socialist Party Different
Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats
Humanist Democratic Centre
11,041,300 12
 Czech Republic Czech Social Democratic Party
ANO 2011
Christian and Democratic Union – Czechoslovak People's Party
Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe
10,513,209 12
 Sweden Swedish Social Democratic Party
Green Party
9,658,301 10
 Austria Social Democratic Party of Austria
Austrian People's Party
8,443,000 10
 Bulgaria Bulgarian Socialist Party
Movement for Rights and Freedoms
7,327,200 10
 Denmark Social Democrats
Social Liberal Party
5,580,500 7
 Slovakia Direction – Social Democracy PES 5,404,300 7
 Finland National Coalition Party
Social Democratic Party of Finland
Left Alliance
Green League
Swedish People's Party of Finland
Christian Democrats
5,401,300 7
 Ireland Fine Gael
Labour Party
4,582,800 7
 Croatia Social Democratic Party of Croatia
Croatian People's Party – Liberal Democrats
Istrian Democratic Assembly
4,398,200 7
 Lithuania Social Democratic Party of Lithuania
Labour Party
Order and Justice
Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania
3,007,800 7
 Slovenia Positive Slovenia
Social Democrats
Civic List
Democratic Party of Pensioners of Slovenia
2,055,500 4
 Luxembourg Democratic Party
Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party
The Greens
524,900 4
 Malta Labour Party PES 416,100 3


The makeup of national delegations to the Council of Ministers is at some times subject to coalitions: for the above governments led by a PES party, that party may not be present in all Council configurations; in other governments led by non-PES parties a PES minister may be its representative for certain portfolios. PES is in coalition in a further six countries: Finland, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg, The Netherlands and Slovenia.

Party-alignment at the European Council is often loose, but has been the basis of some intergovernmental cooperation. At present ten countries are led by a PES-affiliated leader, who represents that state at the European Council: Austria (Werner Faymann), Belgium (Elio Di Rupo), Bulgaria (Plamen Oresharski), Croatia (Zoran Milanovic), the Czech Republic (Bohuslav Sobotka), Denmark (Helle Thorning-Schmidt), France (François Hollande), Italy (Matteo Renzi), Malta (Joseph Muscat), Slovakia (Robert Fico and Sweden Stefan Löfven).

The states of the European Union by the European party affiliations of their leaders, as of 24 January 2015
Does not account for coalitions. Key to colours is as follows;

  Party of European Socialists

European Council and Council of Ministers

Member State Representative Title Political party Member of the Council since Photo
Werner Faymann
Federal Chancellor
Social Democratic Party of Austria
2 December 2008
Zoran Milanović
President of the Government
Social Democratic Party of Croatia
23 December 2011
 Czech Republic
Bohuslav Sobotka
Chairman of the Government
Czech Social Democratic Party
29 January 2014
Helle Thorning-Schmidt
Minister of State
Social Democrats
3 October 2011
François Hollande
Socialist Party
15 May 2012
Matteo Renzi
President of the Council of Ministers
Democratic Party
22 February 2014
Joseph Muscat
Prime Minister
Labour Party
11 March 2013
Robert Fico
Chairman of the Government
Direction – Social Democracy
4 April 2012
Stefan Löfven
Prime Minister
Social Democratic Party
3 October 2014

The PES has 9 out of the 28 heads of State or Government that attend the PES summits in preparation for the European Council:

European Council

Portfolio Commissioner State Political party Photo
High RepresentativeFirst Vice-President;
Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
AshtonCatherine Ashton

United Kingdom
AlmuniaJoaquín Almunia

Inter-Institutional Relations and AdministrationVice-President;
Inter-Institutional Relations and Administration
SefčovičMaroš Šefčovič

Maritime Affairs and Fisheries DamanakiMaria Damanaki

Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy FüleŠtefan Füle

Czech Republic
Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion AndorLászló Andor

Consumer Protection MimicaNeven Mimica


European Commissioners are meant to remain independent, however there has been an increasing degree of politicisation within the Commission.[16] Although the current Barroso Commission is dominated by Commissioners from the centre-right EPP (13/27) and the liberal ELDR (8/27), six of the twenty-seven Commissioners belong to PES.

European Commission

European Parliament

Organisation Institution Number of seats
 European Union European Parliament
195 / 766
 European Union Committee of the Regions
116 / 344
 European Union European Commission
7 / 28
 European Union European Council
(Heads of Government)
9 / 28
 European Union Council of the European Union
(Participation in Government)
19 / 28
 Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly
69 / 318

Overview of the European institutions

PES in the European institutions

In Decembre 2009, disappointed by the European elections results, the PES decided to put forward a candidate for Commission President at all subsequent elections.[14] There is a campaign within the party to organise primaries to select this candidate.[15]

The Leader's Conference brings together Prime Ministers and Party Leaders from PES parties three to four times a year to agree strategies and resolutions.[13]

[13] The President (currently former

The parties meet at the party Congress twice every five years to decide on political orientation, such as adopting manifestos ahead of elections. Every year that the Congress does not meet, the Council (a quarter Congress) shapes PES policy. The Congress also elects the party's President, Vice Presidents and the Presidency.[13]

[13] There are thirty-two full member parties from all the twenty-eight member states and Norway. There are a further eleven associate and ten observer parties. PES is an associated organisation of the


President State National party Term
1. Wilhelm Dröscher  Germany Social Democratic Party of Germany April 1974 January 1979
2. Robert Pontillon  France Socialist Party January 1979 March 1980
3. Joop den Uyl  Netherlands Labour Party March 1980 May 1987
4. Vítor Constâncio  Portugal Socialist Party May 1987 January 1989
5. Guy Spitaels  Belgium Socialist Party February 1989 May 1992
6. Willy Claes  Belgium Socialist Party November 1992 October 1994
7. Rudolf Scharping  Germany Social Democratic Party of Germany March 1995 May 2001
8. Robin Cook  United Kingdom Labour Party May 2001 24 April 2004
9. Poul Nyrup Rasmussen  Denmark Social Democrats 24 April 2004 24 November 2011
10. Sergei Stanishev  Bulgaria Bulgarian Socialist Party 24 November 2011

Presidents of the Party of European Socialists and its predecessors.[12]


The congress also adopted a process presented by the PES as more democratic and transparent[10] for the selection of their candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission in 2014. The PES hope to succeed to José Manuel Barroso [11] benefiting from the failure of the European centre-right find a way out for the crisis in Europe.

) as new Secretary General. SPD. The same Congress elected Achim Post (2014 European elections) and prepared the Smer-SD) and Katarina Nevedalova (Labour (Jan Royall), PSOE (Elena Valenciano), PS as PES President, as well as four deputies: Jean-Christophe Cambadélis (1st Vice-President – Sergei Stanishev, and once at mid-term. The latest Congress elected European Parliament once during the year of the elections for the [9] The Party of European Socialists (PES) held its latest Congress in

Brussels Congress, 28–29 September 2012

On the same day, the PES Council made the decision that the next PES candidate for Commission President would be democratically elected through a PES presidential primary taking place in January 2014.

He resigned at the PES Progressive Convention of Brussels on 24 November 2011, and was replaced by Sergei Dmitrievich Stanishev, chairman of the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), elected PES Interim President, by acclamation, by the PES Presidency.

In 2010, the Foundation for European Progressive Studies was founded as the political foundation of the PES.

In 2004 Poul Nyrup Rasmussen defeated Giuliano Amato to be elected President of the PES, succeeding Robin Cook in the post. He was re-elected for a further 2.5 years at the PES Congress in Porto on 8 December 2006 and for another 2.5 years at the Prague Congress in 2009.


Along with the Socialist Group in the European Parliament, the founding members of the PES were the Social Democratic Party of Austria, the Socialist Party (Francophone) and the Socialist Party (Flemish) of Belgium, the Social Democrats of Denmark, the Socialist Party of France, the Social Democratic Party of Germany, the Panhellenic Socialist Movement of Greece, the Labour Party of Ireland, the Italian Democratic Socialist Party, Italian Socialist Party and Democratic Party of the Left of Italy, the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party, the Labour Party of the Netherlands, Socialist Party of Portugal, the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party, Swedish Social Democratic Party and the Labour Party and Social Democratic and Labour Party of the UK.[7]

[6] In 1992, with the European Communities becoming the


The Luxembourg Congress approved the first Statue of the Confederation of Socialist Parties in 1980. The accession of Greece in 1981, followed by Spain and Portugal in 1986 brought in more parties. In 1984 another common Socialist election manifesto was approved at a congress in Luxembourg. The Manifesto proposed a socialist remedy for the economic crisis by establishing a link between industrial production, protection of the fundamental social benefits and the fight for an improved quality of life.[6]


In 1973, Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom joined the European Community bringing in new parties from these countries. The enlarged Socialist Congress met in Bonn and inaugurated the Confederation of the Socialist Parties of the European Community. The Congress also passed a resolution on social policy, including the right to decent work, social security, democracy and equality in the European economy.[6] In 1978, the Confederation of Socialist Parties approved the first common European election Manifesto. It focused on several goals among which the most important were to ensure a right to decent work, fight pollution, end discrimination, protect the consumer and promote peace, human rights and civil liberties.


In 1961, the Socialists in the European Parliament attempted to produce a common European Socialist Programme but were neglected due to the applications of Britain, Denmark, Ireland and Norway to join the European Communities. The Socialist's 1962 congress pushed for greater democratisation and powers for Parliament though it was only in 1969 that this possibility was examined by the member states.[5]




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