'Comitology'1 denotes the involvement of various kinds of committees in decision-making. Such committees are distinct from the bodies discussed in the previous chapter, since the former do not formally make decisions. Nevertheless, not only may the range of interests taken into account by decision- makers tend to be broadened by their involvement, but also responsiveness of decision makers to network relationships, which reflect the reality of integration, may tend to be facilitated. In other words, the vacuum which might otherwise result from reliance on decision-making in bodies such as the Council of the Union may tend to be filled.
Formal legal support for such tendencies is provided by the EC Treaty and the EEA Agreement. To the extent that possibilities for one Party effectively to participate in the internal decision-making of another Party are entailed, the latter Agreement implicitly rejects strict commitment to ideas of national sovereignty and Community autonomy. Such commitment seems to have been more resistant in the Europe Agreements, which are more reticent than the EEA Agreement in formalizing 'comitology'.2 However, as practice under the EC Treaty and the Free Trade Agreements illustrates, development of 'comitology' is not dependent on formal legal provisions alone.3
Within the EC Treaty framework 'comitology' may be associated with the work of privately established bodies or of bodies established under the Treaty.____________________