The results of the European elections, which took place on May 23-26 in all EU member states, saw anti-immigrant, far-right parties and Greens increased their seats in the European Parliament (EP) while central parties faced significant declines in Sunday's elections, according to preliminary results.
Pro-EU European People's Party (EPP) -- which had 216 seats before the elections -- led the elections with 173 seats in the 751-seat EP while Social Democrats (S&D) gained 147 seats with 40 seats down from the previous elections in 2014.
An alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) won 102 seats
European Greens/European Free Alliance (EFA) - 71 seats
European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) - 58 seats
Europe of Nations and Freedom (ENF) – 57 seats
European Freedoms and Direct Democracy (EFDD) – 56 seats
European United Left–Nordic Green Left (GUE-NGL) - 42 seats
Independents and other candidates - 45 seats
Far-right parties represented by three political alliances -- European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), Europe of Nations and Freedom (ENF) and European Freedoms and Direct Democracy (EFDD), tried to gather under a single group.
The turnout for the European Parliament election across Europe was around 51%, an increase from 42.6% in 2014.
About 400 million voters were eligible to cast ballots in the EP elections, making it the second largest democratic election after India.
The elections for the EP are held every five years, and along with the European Union Council, they confirm and approve the union's laws and budget.
-EU meetings planned
The EU’s Competitiveness Council will gather in Brussels on Monday and Tuesday to hold public policy debates on the future approach to the single market and the EU's long-term industrial policy strategy. Ministers will also debate the EU's role in global space policy.
EU’s Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) will meet in Brussels on Monday. The Council is expected to discuss the state of play on the reform of and negotiations in the World Trade Organization (WTO). The EU has been actively engaged in promoting the comprehensive modernization of the WTO, which would involve rulemaking, monitoring and dispute settlement. Ministers will also focus on the recent developments in EU-U.S. trade relations. In April 2019, the Council approved mandates for the European Commission to open negotiations with the United States on the elimination of tariffs for industrial goods and on conformity assessment. This is in line with the July 2018 joint statement of Presidents Jean-Claude Juncker and Donald Trump.
The Council will also take stock of preparations for the signature of the free trade agreement and the investment protection agreement with Vietnam. The Council presidency is planning to complete these agreements by the end of its term by June 30.
After the European Parliament elections, EU heads of state or government will meet for a summit on May 28 in Brussels. At the informal dinner, leaders will discuss the outcome of the vote and start the nomination process for the heads of the EU institutions.