Movers and Shakers | 14 December 2015

Written by Dods People EU on 14 December 2015 in News

Keep track of developments in the European institutions and public affairs with our movers and shakers column.

European Parliament:

Substitutes of the Committees, Subcommittees and the Delegations:
Cristian Dan PREDA (EPP, RO) joined the Delegation to the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (D-ACP).

Political groups:
Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (EFDD): Paul NATTALL appointed Head of UKIP’s MEPs in the Parliament, replacing Roger HELMER and Head of the British delegation of members of the EFDD group.


European Commission:

Directorates General:

Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI):
Directorate H – General Aspects of Rural Development and Research: Matthias LANGEMEYER became the new acting Head of European network and monitoring of rural development policy Unit, replacing Markus HOLZER.

Environment (ENV):
Directorate B - Natural Capital: Humberto DELGADO ROSA became the new Director, replacing Stefan LEINER.
Directorate E - Global and Regional Challenges, LIFE: Emmanuelle MAIRE became the new Head of Global Sustainability, Trade and Multilateral Agreements Unit, replacing Hans STIELSTRA.

Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union (FISMA):
John BERRIGAN appointed Deputy Director-General in charge of Directorates B, C, D, and E.

International Cooperation and Development (DEVCO):
Marjeta JAGER appointed Deputy Director-General responsible for the coordination of Directorates C, G and H and the “Knowledge, Performance and Results” Task Force.

Migration and Home Affairs (HOME):
Frédéric KNECHCIAK left his position as Adviser.

Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR):
Directorate A - Strategy and Turkey: Allan JONES became the new acting Head of Strategy, Policy, Planning, EEA/EFTA Unit, replacing Lawrence MEREDITH.
Directorate C - Neighbourhood East: Lawrence MEREDITH became the new Director, replacing Vassilis MARAGOS.

Translation (DGT):
Directorate A – Translation: Klaus MEYER-KOEKEN appointed Director, replacing Paula OVASKA-ROMANO.

Spokesperson’s Service:
Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations: Alceo SMERILLI became the new Press Officer, replacing Anca PADURARU.

What’s new?
New EU comprehensive Human Rights Defenders Mechanism:
Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven MIMICA announced the creation of the first ever EU comprehensive Human Rights Defenders Mechanism. The new mechanism will be managed by a consortium of 12 independent international Non-Governmental Organisations and constitutes a major innovation that will contribute to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, agreed by the international community in September. The mechanism will aim at becoming the main European tool to assist human rights defenders in the EU and abroad and will be running until 2018.


European External Action Service (EEAS):

Budget and Administration Directorate-General:
Patricia LLOMBART CUSSAC appointed Security, Infrastructure, Budget and Information Technology Director as of 16 December 2015, replacing Philippe RUYS.

Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) and Crisis Response:
Gerhard CONRAD appointed Intelligence and Situation Centre Director as of early 2016, replacing Ilkka SALMI.

Special Representatives (EUSR):
Angel LOSADA FERNANDEZ appointed as EUSR for the Sahel until 28 February 2017, replacing Michel Dominique REVEYRAND-DE MENTHON.


General Court:

The Council adopted a regulation reforming the General Court, in order to enable it to deal with the increasing workload. In total 21 additional Judges will be appointed at the General Court by the end of the process. When the reform enters into force at the end of this month, the number of Judges will increase by 12. In September 2016, the seven posts of judges at the Civil Service Tribunal will be transferred to the General Court, to which nine further judges will be attributed in September 2019. The aim of the future replacements of Judges is to ensure gender equality and it will be organised in a way that the member states nominate candidates for two posts.


Missions to the EU:

The following Ambassadors presented their letters of credentials to the President of the European Council on 8 December 2015:

Republic of Mauritius: Haymandoyal DILLUM, Ambassador, Head of the Mission, replacing Jagdish KOONJUL.

Kingdom of Norway: Oda Helen SLETNES, Ambassador, Head of the Mission.

Republic of Iraq: Jawad Khadim Jawad AL-CHLAIHAWI, Ambassador, Head of the Mission.


Public affairs:

European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA): the Board of Directors elected Dieter Zetsche as its President for 2016.

European Community Shipowners' Associations (ECSA): Niels SMEDEGAARD was elected as the new President starting in January 2016, replacing Thomas REHDER.

European Diisocyanate and Polyol Producers Association (ISOPA): After two years as Vice-President of the Association, Mike FOWLES will succeed Frank GRUNERT as President. Frank JUNGMANN, who currently serves as Vice President for the Business Management Isocyanates at BASF for Europe, Middle East and Africa, was appointed as the new Vice-President of ISOPA.

Transparency International EU: a new advisory group was established for the first time and will guide the work of the organisation. Mario MONTI, ex-Prime Minister of Italy will chair the group.


News in a nutshell:

European Parliament:
MEPs head to Strasbourg from Monday 14 to Thursday 17 for the plenary. 

The Conference of Presidents decided to establish a new structure and a process for the oversight of EU financial adjustment programmes, following a request made by Greek Prime Minister Alexis TSIPRAS, Syriza (GUE/NGL). The Economic and Monetary Committee (ECON) will play a leading role in this direction and will also involve some other committees of the Parliament that are most affected. The work of this structure will be done publicly and will include plenary debates.

Member states:
Prime Minister Laimdota STRAUJUMA, Unity (EPP) stepped down on Monday 7 December over dissatisfaction about her leadership within the centre-right ruling coalition.  All six parties represented in the Latvian Parliament are to meet with President Raimonds VĒJONIS and discuss ideas for potential coalitions.

United Kingdom: The lower House of Parliament voted on 9 December against reducing the voting age for the EU referendum. In his letter to the EU leader, President Donald TUSK wrote that the consultations about the issues raised by the British Prime Minister David CAMERON, Conservatives (ECR) are difficult. However, all issues will be discussed in the European Council in December in order to be able to prepare concrete proposals to be adopted in February.

Candidate countries:
Defence Minister Bratislav GAŠIĆ (Serbian Progressive Party) was sacked over sexist remarks to a female journalists. His successor has not been announced yet.

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