Publications Office of the EU
AKN4EU - EU Vocabularies


A Common Structured Format for EU Legislative Documents

It is widely accepted that the use of common formats greatly facilitates the exchange and reuse of information: common formats enable interoperability. The adoption of common formats increases efficiency and quality as well as facilitating synergies between the entities involved, and this leads to savings in time and money. This is particularly true for legislative documents produced by the EU institutions during the interinstitutional legislative process.

Since 2018 the Interinstitutional Metadata and Formats Committee (IMFC) has been tasked with developing and maintaining common interinstitutional standards for the secured and automated exchange of data based on machine-readable structured formats for content and metadata.

Built on the IMFC Common Vocabulary, Akoma Ntoso for European Union (AKN4EU) is the future machine-readable structured format for the exchange of legal documents in the EU decision-making process. It is based on XML, and more specifically on Akoma Ntoso, an OASIS standard, and should serve as the specification for all future exchanges of legal documents. The scope of the current version includes legal acts adopted through the ordinary legislative procedure (regulations, directives and decisions), as well as the respective legislative proposals. The Interinstitutional Metadata and Formats Committee (IMFC) will further develop and maintain AKN4EU as the interinstitutional standard for the exchange of structured content.


The use of AKN4EU and the IMFC’s continued work to promote the implementation of a seamless automated workflow will bring benefits in terms of greater simplification, effectiveness, efficiency and security in the exchange of legal data.

1Akoma Ntoso for European Union, formerly referred to as Common Exchange Model (CEM).

Specific versions of AKN4EU




This publication represents the current working version of the AKN4EU.

It is published for information purposes. It marks work in progress and has not been fully implemented yet.

Neither the Publications Office nor any person acting on behalf of the Publications Office is responsible for the use that might be made of this publication.

If you have any comments, questions or further need for information, please contact: OP-CUSTOMER-SUPPORT@publications