Movers and Shakers | 10 October 2016

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

By Ifigenia Balkoura

10 Oct 2016

Today's Movers & Shakers are about: the outgoing MEPs and the plenary session highlights, the latest changes in the Commission's Directorates-General, the new European Border and Coast Agency, the Lithuanian elections, Brexit and more.

 

European Parliament:

Outgoing:
Tim KIRKHOPE (ECR, UK) attended his last plenary session on Wednesday 5 October before joining the House of Lords.
Jordi SEBASTIÀ (Greens/EFA, ES) is leaving his seat in the Parliament on Monday 10 October.

Political groups:
Alain LAMASSOURE stepped down as leader of the EPP French delegation, likely to run as EPP candidate for the Presidency. Franck PROUST is now at the helm of the French delegation.
Antanas GUOGA (LT) defected from ALDE group and joined EPP. Following the defection the current seat breakdown of the Parliament is as follows:

Presidency:
ECR Group nominated Helga STEVENS (BE) as their candidate for the Parliament’s presidency. The leader of EPP group Chair Manfred WEBER (DE), has confirmed his group will put forward a candidate for the assembly's presidency. Read more.

Members of Committees, Subcommittees and the Delegations: 
Antanas GUOGA (EPP, LT) left the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) and joined the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality (FEMM).
Catherine BEARDER (ALDE, UK) left the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality (FEMM) and joined the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO).
Brian CROWLEY (ECR, IE) joined the Delegation for relations with the United States (D-US).
Angelo CIOCCA (ENF, IT) joined the Delegation to the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (D-ACP).

Substitutes of Committees, Subcommittees and the Delegations: 
Antanas GUOGA (EPP, LT) left the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) and the Delegation for relations with Switzerland and Norway and to the EU-Iceland Joint Parliamentary Committee and the European Economic Area (EEA) Joint Parliamentary Committee (D-EEA).


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Plenary highlights:
Steven WOOLFE (EFDD, UK), frontrunner in the UKIP leadership race is recovering in hospital after being allegedly punched by colleague. Read more. President Martin SCHULZ (S&D, DE) has intervened in the furious row over the alleged physical attack on UKIP deputy by referring the case "as a matter of urgency" to the assembly's advisory committee. Read more.

Upcoming European Council debate: Ivan KORČOK, representing the Slovak Presidency of the EU, began by saying that there are three points on the agenda of the meeting of Heads of State: migration, trade and Russia. Read more.

Paris Agreement: The European Parliament has formally approved the ratification the Paris agreement on climate change, with 610 votes in favour, 38 against and 31 abstentions. The EU ratification will trigger the entry into force of the first-ever universal, legally-binding global climate deal. Read more.

Poland’s abortion ban: Several MEPs have pledged their support for the Polish 'Black Monday' pro-abortion campaigners in their challenge against proposals to totally ban abortion. Read more.

Former European Commission President José Manuel BARROSO appointment in Goldman Sachs: Senior MEPs blasted Barroso’s appointment as non-Executive Chairman of the international unit, were he will be advising on Brexit and other global issues. Read more.

Brexit: Parliament’s Chief Negotiator Guy VERHOFSTADT (ALDE, BE), welcomed the announcement by UK Prime Minister Theresa May that Article 50,  will be triggered by next March. Read more.

National parties:
Diane JAMES (EFDD, UK) stepped down as leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) 18 days after she was elected. Read more. Nigel FARAGE MEP who will be acting the role until fresh election is held, ruled out to return in the leadership. This is the third time he is returning as Leader.

 

European Commission:

Cabinets:
Kristalina GEORGIEVA team
: David SHARROCK joined the team as member, replacing Michael JENNINGS.
 
Directorates General:
Budget (BUDG):

Directorate B – Own Resources and Financial Programming: Pascal STELLER became acting Head of Unit, ‘Multiannual financial framework; funding systems and forecasts; budgetary aspects of enlargement’, replacing Stephanie RISO. Ms RISO joined the newly instated Article 50 Task Force as an Adviser.
 
Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CNECT):
Directorate D – Policy Strategy and Outreach: David RINGROSE became Head of Unit, ‘Policy Outreach and International Affairs’, replacing Antoinette ANGELOVA-KRASTEVA who moved to DG EAC. Mr RINGROSE was previously Head of Unit, ‘Communication’, in the same Directorate. Anna KATRAMI became acting Head of the ‘Communication’ unit.
Directorate F – Digital Single Market: Werner STENGG became Head of Unit, ‘E-Commerce and Platforms’, replacing Prabhat AGARWAL who was acting in the role. Mr STENGG was previously Head of Unit, ‘Public Interest Services’ in DG GROW.

Communications (COMM):
Directorate D – Resources: Sonja ZIEMER became Head of Unit, ‘Budget, Accounting and Evaluation’ (previously Budget, Accounting and Logistics), replacing Marc SIEVERS who was acting in the role. Ms ZIEMER was Head of Unit, ‘Coordination and Evaluation’, reporting directly to the Director General. This unit has since been dissolved.
Mr SIEVERS became acting Head of a new unit, ‘Infrastructure, Security and Document Management’. The Human Resources unit moved out of Directorate D and now reports directly to the Director General with the Head of Unit Michele CHAPELIER becoming ‘HR Business correspondent’.
 
Competition (COMP):
Directorate A – Policy and Strategy: Eddy DE SMIJTER became Head of Unit, ‘International Relations’, replacing Maria Blanca RODRIGUEZ GALINDO who moved to DG HOME. Mr DE SMIJTER was Head of Unit, ‘European Competition Network and Private Enforcement’, in the same Directorate and is now acting in the role.
 
Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN):
Directorate A – Policy, strategy, coordination and communication: Gabriele GIUDICE became Head of Unit, ‘EMU deepening and macroeconomy of the euro area’, replacing Martin LARCH.
Directorate C – Fiscal policy and policy mix: Martin LARCH became Head of Unit, ‘Monetary policy, exchange rate policy of the euro area, ERM II and euro adoption’, replacing Paul KUTOS.
Directorate F – Economies of the Member States I: Paul KUTOS became Head of Unit, ‘Greece’, replacing Gabriele GIUDICE.
Directorate R – Resources: Michaela DI BUCCI became Director replacing Joost KUHLMANN who was acting in the role. Ms DI BUCCI moved to ECFIN from the Commission’s Secretariat General where she was Head of Unit, ‘Cyprus Settlement Support’, in the Structural Reform Support Service. Mr KUHLMANN remains as an Adviser in the Secretariat of ECFIN’s Committees.
 
European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid (ECHO):
Directorate A – Emergency Management: Alfonso DE LA FUENTE GARRIGOSA became acting Head of Unit, ‘Civil Protection Policy’, replacing Hans DAS.
 
Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (EMPL):
Directorate D – Labour Mobility: Jiri PLECITY became Head of Unit, ‘France, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg’, replacing Antonio GARCIA GIL who was acting in the role. Mr PLECITY moved from Directorate G where he was Head of Unit, ‘Audit Direct management, Discharge’. Bruno LEMAIRE replaces him as acting Head.
 
International Cooperation and Development (DEVCO):
Directorate B – Human Development and Migration: Olivier LUYCKX became Head of Unit, ‘Stability, Security, Development and Nuclear Safety’, replacing Adriaan VAN DER MEER. Mr LUYCKX was previously Head of Unit, ‘Terrorism and Crisis Management’, in DG HOME.
Directorate C – Sustainable Growth and Development: Jose SOLER CARBO became acting Head of Unit, ‘Environment, Ecosystems, Biodiversity and Wildlife’, replacing Veronique LORENZO.
 
Informatics (DIGIT):
Directorate A – Digital Workplace Solutions: Yves PATERNOSTER became acting Head of Task Force ‘Technology trend and Foresight’ replacing José MARÍN NAVARRO. Mr PATERNOSTER is also Head of Unit, ‘Office automation and mobility solutions’.
Directorate B – Digital Business Solutions: Roberto BARCELLAN became acting Head of Unit, ‘Corporate knowledge and Decision making solutions’, replacing Natalia ARISTIMUNO PEREZ who moved to Unit ‘Corporate HR Solutions’. Ms ARISTIMUNO PEREZ replaced Konstantinos DRYLLERAKIS.
 
Migration and Home Affairs (HOME):
Directorate A – Strategy and General Affairs: Maria Blanca RODRIGUEZ GALINDO became Head of Unit, ‘International Coordination’, replacing Pawel BUSIAKIEWICZ who acting in the role. Ms RODRIGUEZ GALINDO was previously Head of the International relations unit in DG COMP. Mr BUSIAKIEWICZ became acting Head of a new unit, ‘Knowledge hub for migration and security’.
Directorate B – Migration, Mobility and Innovation: Anabela GAGO became Head of Unit, ‘Innovation and Industry Security’, replacing Graham WILLMOTT. Ms GAGO moved from Directorate D where she was Head of the Organised Crime unit.
Directorate C – Migration and Protection: Martin SCHIEFFER moved in to the Directorate C from D to become Head of a new unit ‘Migration management support’.
Directorate D – Security: the Directorate was reorganised and its units renamed: ‘Police Cooperation and information exchange’ (was Police Cooperation) – HoU Victoria AMICI. ‘Terrorism and radicalisation’ (was Terrorism and crisis management) – HoU Hans DAS replaced Olivier LUYCKX who moved to DG DEVCO. ‘Organised crime and Drugs Policy’ (was Organised Crime) – HoU Floriana SIPALA. Ms SIPALA was HoU ‘Anti-Drugs Policy’ and is now in charge of the newly merged unit. ‘Cybercrime’ (new unit) – HoU Graham WILLMOTT. Mr WILLMOTT moved from Directorate B.
Directorate E – Migration and Security Funds: Bernadette FREDERICK became Head of Unit, ‘National programmes or South and East Europe; evaluation; AMIF/ISF Committee’, replacing Martin SCHIEFFER who moved to Directorate C. Ms FREDERICK joins DG HOME from the Innovation and Networks Agency.
 


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Human Resources and Security (HR):
Directorate DS – Security: the Directorate’s units were renamed and reduced from five to four with the responsibilities being redistributed:
Operations: Richard SONNENSCHEIN is Head of Unit having headed up the former ‘Protection and Crisis Management ‘unit.
Technical Security: Nicholas KAYE became acting Head of Unit. The former ‘Technical Security and Guards’ unit was dissolved.
Information Security: Maresa MEISSL remains in charge of this unit.
Horizontal Tasks: Andrius NAVIKAS is Head having previously managed the former ‘Security Inspection and Advice’ unit.
Michel DE WOLF and Thierry VINOIS left the Directorate.
 
Research and Innovation (RDT):
Directorate A – Policy Development and Coordination: Renzo TOMELLINI became Head of Unit, ‘Horizon 2020 policy’ replacing Alan CROSS who is Deputy Head and was acting in the role. Mr TOMELLINI moved from Directorate I where he was Head of Unit, ‘Strategy’. Deputy Head Maria Luisa TAMBORRA became acting Head. 
 
Secretariat General (SG):
Directorate E – Policy Co-ordination II: William SLEATH became acting Director replacing James MORRISON who moved to Commission KING’s cabinet. Mr SLEATH is Head of Unit, ‘Citizens and Security’, in the same Directorate.
Directorate F – Relations with other Institutions: Vincente HURTADO ROA became acting Head of Unit, ‘European Council, Coreper I & II’, replacing Stefano GRASSI.
European Solidarity Corps (ESC): the ESC was established as a result of President JUNCKER’s State of Union speech and will be based in the SG. It will coordinate professional and volunteer programmes for Europeans under 30 who want to offer their help in periods of crisis or in addressing social challenges. Leading the Corps is Jonathan FAULL in his final role with the Commission having announced his intention to retire last week.
 
Taxation and Customs Union (TAXUD):
Principle Adviser: Paulo José SANTOS was appointed as Principle Adviser overseeing IT related issues, as of 16 October. He is currently Head of Unit, ‘User Services and Relationship Management’, in DG DIGIT.
 

European Border and Coast Agency:

The re-styled Frontex was officially launched on 6 October at the Bulgaria-Turkey border.  Commissioner AVRAMOPOULOS spoke at the launch, projecting that by 2020 the Agency will have 1000 staff and a budget of €320mil. He and Frontex Executive Director Fabrice LEGGERI spoke of a greater coordination of member state boarder agencies and building better relationships with third countries.
Some of the new features of the Agency including the establishment of rapid reaction resources that will assist member states in crisis. This will become operational on 7 December 2016. He also spoke of vulnerability assessments for member states to consider potential weaknesses in their borders and their provisions for migrants. These assessments are planned to take place between January and March 2017.

 

Public Affairs:

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Eurogas: CEO of the newly formed Uniper, Klaus SCHÄFER was elected as the new President. Mr SCHÄFER is taking over from Gertjan LANKHORST, who will remain in the Executive Committee.

European Institute of Peace (EIP): On Friday 7 October Pekka HAAVISTO was appointed as the new President for a two-year term. HAAVISTO who is a member of the Finnish Parliament and has twice served as a cabinet minister succeeds Staffan DE MISTURA.

Invest Europe: Michael COLLINS was appointed as the new Chief Executive, succeeding Dörte HÖPPNER. COLLINS who joined the association in 2013 as Public Affairs Director was promoted to Deputy Chief Executive in 2015. In his new role he will be focusing among others on the upcoming review of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD).

 

News in a nutshell:

United Nations: Former Prime Minister of Portugal Antonio GUTERRES was unanimously nominated by the Security Council to become the next Secretary General.

Member states:
Croatia: Coalition talks between the Croatian Democratic Union and centre-right Most are continuing and their leader MEP Andrej PLENKOVIĆ (EPP) and Božo PETROV said that they are close to striking a deal.

Estonia: Kersti KALJULAID who was elected as President is to be sworn in on Monday 10 October.

Lithuania: The Peasants and Green Party heads the polls in the first round of the parliamentary elections held on Sunday 9 October, while the ruling Social Democratic party comes third, according to preliminary results. The runoff vote will be held on 23 October.

United Kingdom: British Interior Minister Amber RUDD's call for businesses to disclose their proportion of foreign workers widely condemned. A furious backlash has erupted over UK proposals that could see businesses forced to list the number of foreign workers they employ. Read more. German Chancellor on the other hand reiterated that the UK will not have full access to the European single market without accepting free movement of people. Read more.

Read the most recent articles written by Ifigenia Balkoura - Movers and Shakers | 26 November 2018

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