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After a long discussion with the European Commission’s Spokespersons Service (SPP), API has reached an agreement about the access of non-accredited, non-Brussels-based journalists to off-the-record technical and background briefings. The SPP initially wanted to open up those briefings to a wide array of non-Brussels-based journalists, but there was much opposition to this from the Brussels correspondents. The new arrangement means that it is those correspondents themselves who will have a say in the access of their colleagues from outside the Brussels bubble to those briefings. Such access will continue to be reserved for media already accredited in Brussels.

The text of the agreement reads:
 “Each EU accredited journalist, on an own initiative, has the possibility to forward a personal invitation to technical and background briefings organised by the Spokesperson’s Service to a non-accredited journalist from the same media organisation. The accredited journalist will inform the Spokesperson’s Service of this fact in advance of the beginning of the technical and background briefing concerned and will provide the name and contact details of the invited non-accredited journalist by sending an email to: COMM-PRESSROOM-TEAM@ec.europa.eu.

The Spokesperson’s Service will then send a personal invitation to the non-Brussels-based correspondent.”

This provision has been added to the existing code of conduct between the SPP and API, which can be found here.

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