About European Legislation Identifier

What is ELI?*

The European Legislation Identifier (ELI) is a system to make legislation available online in a standardised format, so that it can be accessed, exchanged and reused across borders. This initiative, taken jointly by EU countries and institutions, is enshrined in the Council Conclusions of 6 November 2017 on the European Legislation Identifier (2017/C 441/05). **

ELI is based on a voluntary agreement between the EU countries. It includes technical specifications on:

  • web identifiers (URIs) for legal information
  • metadata specifying how to describe legal vinformation
  • a specific language for exchanging legislation in machine-readable formats

ELI is funded under Action "Facilitating the exchange of legislation data in Europe", which falls under the Interoperability Solutions for European Public Administrations (ISA²) Programme.

* This content has been transferred from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli-register/about.html

** The Council conclusions of 6 November 2017 on the European Legislation Identifier are built on an initial version of the Council Conclusions published on 26 October 2012 (2012/C 325/02).

ELI's advantages*

ELI has the following advantages:

  • Better-quality, more reliable legislation data: ELI helps improve the quality and reliability of legal information online through the use of persistent identifiers and structured metadata.
  • Greater interoperability: ELI encourages interoperability among information systems by structuring legislation in a standardised way, while taking account of the specific features of different legal systems.
  • Better access to legislation: Thanks to search engine optimisation, ELI makes it easier to locate legal data, which can thus be more widely used.
  • It promotes the development of new services: Making legislation available in a structured way helps develop value-added services.
  • Cost savings: ELI makes information flows more effective and shortens the time taken to publish legislation.
  • It promotes transparency: By improving access to legal information, ELI makes it easier to follow up work done by governments, and promotes greater accountability.

* This content has been transferred from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli-register/about.html

Narodne novine ELI implementation

Narodne novine d.d. as the publisher of the Croatian official journal has taken steps to implement ELI. The implementation will be done in three phases: ELI URLs, ELI metadata, ELI document part access. The current NN web (as of Jan 2020) implements the first phase (ELI URLs).

Narodne novine ELI URLs

As of Jan 2020, the whole content of the website https://narodne-novine.nn.hr/ may be accessed through ELI URLs in parallel to the existing NN url scheme.

For example, the new ELI url scheme applied to a document looks like this:


What is equivalent to the existing NN url scheme as follows:


ELI URL scheme

The basic scheme may be explained like this:

/eli/<part>/<year>/<number>/<article number>/<language>/<format>


<part> is "sluzbeni" or "medunarodni" (official or international)

<year> is a four-digit number, denotes the official year of journal publication

<number> is a positive number, denotes the number of the journal within the chosen year

<article number> is an alpha-numeric sequence, denotes the number of the article (very rarely contains letters)

<language> is a three-letter code denoting the language of the article (according to the ISO 639-3)

<format> is a sequence denoting the type of document format, currently only some documents are "pdf", and others are "html" or "printhtml"

Format and language specifiers are optional.


The language metadata is encoded as a three letter code according to the ISO 639-3 standard. Additionally, the value "mul" may be specified meaning "multilanguage". For example all of the following three links go to the very same document because it is a bilingual document containing Croatian and Italian parts.

The language specifier is optional.





The "html" format is the default format and represents the way pages are shown when found and browsed in the search engine.


The "printhtml" format contains the exact same legislative content as the "html" format, but presents the content in a clutterless way to enable easier printing (no menus, no metadata, without page graphics) and also bares a short title and date at the top of the document.


In order to get the print version of the document, we may change just the format specifier value:


The "pdf" format is enabled and some documents are of this format, but more is expected in the future. Here is an example of a document available in the PDF format:


If no format specifier is supplied, it will try to default to "html", and if "html" is unavailable, then it will default to "pdf".


If wrong ELI codes are queried, error page will be returned just like in standard handling of wrong requests and errors.


All ELI variants of urls exist side-by-side with original NN URLs in the (sub)sitemaps of the NN search site.

For example, the sitemap of the 2017 second edition of the international part ("medunarodni") of the OJ (Official journal)


shows two links for each legislative document it addresses:


ELI partial URL schemes

Partial ELI URL schemes are enabled in NN site, so we may access the legislative documents within one year like this:



More precisely, the ELI partial URL scheme is:



<part> is "sluzbeni" or "medunarodni" (official or international)

<year> is a four-digit number, denotes the official year of journal publication

<number> is a positive number, denotes the number of the journal within the chosen year

The number specifier is optional. If not supplied (like in previous two examples, see up), all documents of the chosen year will be listed. So, if the number of OJ is specified


then only articles published in the chosen journal will be listed.

Wrong years or non-existent journal numbers will be treated as errors.

ELI title specifier

Sometimes, it may be convenient to address the document's title in its very url instead of specifying its numeric identifier. For this case, we have a solution that enables URL title queries for a chosen part, year, and number.

For example, the article


May also be accessed like this:

http://narodne-novine.nn.hr/eli/sluzbeni/1990/1/?title=Odluka o donošenju Prostornog plana Nacionalnog parka Krka

ELI may be used in language contexts far away from Croatian, so some users using the ELI URLs will find it difficult to input letters specific to the Croatian language. For this case, we made title specification prone to letter diacritics variation. Therefore, the following URL will fetch the very same document:

http://narodne-novine.nn.hr/eli/sluzbeni/1990/1/?title=Odluka o donosenju Prostornog plana Nacionalnog parka Krka

In rare cases two documents published in the same OJ may have an equal title, thus making ELI title query ambivalent. In case of such ambivalence, a "Not found" notice is generated.