Ursula von der Leyen presents team and structure of next European Commission
On 10 September 2019, European Commission President-elect Ursula von der Leyen presented her team and the new structure of the next European Commission.
The new College of Commissioners will consist of eight Vice-Presidents. Three of them will be Executive Vice-Presidents and will be both Vice-President responsible for one of three core topics of the President-elect's agenda and Commissioners:
Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans (Netherlands) will coordinate the work on the European Green Deal. He will also manage climate action policy, supported by the Directorate-General for Climate Action.
Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager (Denmark) will coordinate the EU agenda on a Europe fit for the digital age and be the Commissioner for Competition, supported by the Directorate-General for Competition.
Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis (Latvia) will coordinate the work on an Economy that Works for People and be the Commissioner for financial services, supported by the Directorate-General for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union.
The five other Vice-Presidents are:
- Josep Borrell (Spain, current Spanish Foreign Minister): HR/VP-designate, A Stronger Europe in the World;
- Věra Jourová (Czech Republic, Commissioner in the Juncker Commission): Values and Transparency;
- Margaritis Schinas (Greece, former Member of the European Parliament, long-serving official of the European Commission): Protecting our European Way of Life;
- Maroš Šefčovič (Slovakia, Vice-President in the Juncker Commission): Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight;
- Dubravka Šuica (Croatia, Member of the European Parliament): Democracy and Demography. Ms Šuica will also lead, from the Commission side, the work on the Conference on the Future of Europe.
The other Commissioners-designate are as follows:
- Johannes Hahn (Austria), a long-serving member of the College, will be in charge of ‘Budget and Administration', and will report directly to Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
- Didier Reynders (Belgium), trained as a lawyer, and formerly was national Finance Minister, Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Minister of Defence. In the new Commission, he will be responsible for ‘Justice' (including the topic of the rule of law).
- Mariya Gabriel (Bulgaria) is a current European Commissioner for the digital portfolio, and is now moving on to the ‘Innovation and Youth', which also covers education and research.
- Stella Kyriakides (Cyprus) is a medical psychologist with many years of experience in the field of social affairs, health and cancer prevention. She will lead the ‘Health' portfolio.
- Kadri Simson (Estonia) is a long-serving member of the Estonian parliament and Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure. She will be in charge of the ‘Energy' portfolio.
- Jutta Urpilainen (Finland) was Finance Minister and a long-standing member of the Finnish Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee; she has also worked as a special envoy in Ethiopia. She will take over responsibility for ‘International Partnerships'.
- Sylvie Goulard (France), former Member of European Parliament, will be ‘Internal Market' Commissioner and will lead the Commission's work on industrial policy and promote the Digital Single Market. She will also be responsible for the new Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space.
- László Trócsányi (Hungary) is the former Minister of Justice of Hungary. He will lead the ‘Neighbourhood and Enlargement' portfolio.
- Phil Hogan (Ireland), the incumbent Commissioner for Agriculture, will be responsible for the ‘Trade' portfolio.
- Paolo Gentiloni (Italy), former Italian Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, will be responsible for the ‘Economy' portfolio.
- Virginijus Sinkevičius (Lithuania), Lithuanian Minister for Economy and Innovation, will be responsible for ‘Environment and Oceans'.
- Nicolas Schmit (Luxembourg) is bringing his experience from the European Parliament and his service as national Minister for Employment and Labour, and will now be responsible for the ‘Jobs' portfolio.
- Helena Dalli (Malta) has served as Minister for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties, and also as a Minister for European Affairs and Equality. She will lead the ‘Equality' portfolio.
- Janusz Wojciechowski (Poland) was a long-serving Member of the European Parliament in the Agriculture Committee, and is currently a Member of the European Court of Auditors. He will be in charge of the portfolio ‘Agriculture'.
- Elisa Ferreira (Portugal) is currently Vice-Governor of Banco de Portugal. She has been a Member of the European Parliament for many years, and was the Portuguese Minister for Planning and Minister for Environment. She will lead the ‘Cohesion and Reforms' portfolio.
- Rovana Plumb (Romania) is a Member of the European Parliament (Vice-President of the Social and Democrats Group), and is a former national Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Minister of Labour, Minister of European Funds, Minister of Education and Minister of Transport. She will be in charge of the ‘Transport' portfolio.
- Janez Lenarčič (Slovenia) is a Slovenian diplomat. He was Secretary of State for European Affairs, and worked closely for several years with the United Nations, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the European Union. He will be in charge of the ‘Crisis Management' portfolio.
- Ylva Johansson (Sweden) is national Minister for Employment but also a former Minister for Schools and Minister for Health and Elderly Care and member of Swedish Parliament. She will lead the ‘Home Affairs' portfolio.
Ms. von der Leyen also states that all members of the College will visit every Member State in the first half of their mandate, to get to know the capitals and visit the regions. College meetings will be paperless and digital. She also intends to apply the "One-in, one-out" principle when the Commission creates new laws and regulations, to cut red tape.
As a next step, the European Parliament has to give its consent to the entire College of Commissioners, including the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission. This is preceded by hearings of the Commissioners-designate in the relevant Parliamentary committees, in line with Parliament's Rules of Procedure. Once the European Parliament has given its consent, the European Council formally appoints the European Commission, in line with Article 17(7) TEU.
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