Union citizen

Union citizenship was established by the Treaty on European Union (EU Treaty), which was undersigned in Maastricht in 1992.

Citizenship of the European Union presupposes nationality of a Member State, i. e. every person holding the nationality of a Member State is regarded as an EU citizen.

Union citizenship does not replace national citizenship but complements it. It increases citizens’ awareness of the fact that they are part of the European Union and makes it more specific for them.

At Bundestag elections, Union citizenship is not of any relevance.

At European elections and at municipal elections, Union citizens have the right to vote and stand as candidates in the Member State of which they are nationals, but they may choose to exercise these rights in the Members State where they live instead.


Union citizens entitled to vote in Germany in European Elections since 1994
European Election Union citizens entitled to vote Member states of the European Union except Germany
12.06.1994 1.2 11
13.06.1999 1.6 14
13.06.2004 2.2 24
07.06.2009 2.1 26
25.05.2014 3.1 27
26.05.2019 3.9 27

Excepting 1999 6.5 Percent of the Union citizens entitled to vote were averagely entered in a German voters’ register.

Legal bases

Articles 17 to 22 of the EU Treaty
Council Directive 93/109/EC

Last update: 13 February 2023