Movers and Shakers | 19 March 2021

Keep track of developments in the European institutions and public affairs with our Movers and Shakers column.

By Mia Bartoloni

Mia Bartoloni is the Editor of Dods People EU and the European Public Affairs Directory (EPAD)

19 Mar 2021

Today’s Movers & Shakers are about: The Commission reorganises DG GROW, Dutch election results, Spain's deputy prime minister quits, the latest Commission appointments, and more!

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European Parliament

Committees and Delegations

Tiziana Beghin (NI, IT) has left the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee (IMCO)

European Commission


Budget (BUDG)
Zuzana Maluskova replaces Niall Bohan as head of unit E4 (Policy & Legal Coordination). Bohan had been performing the role in an acting capacity.
Alina Burea replaces Geert Deruyter as head of unit D5 (Knowledge management). Deruyter had been performing the role in an acting capacity.

Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN)
Elena Flores has begun in her role as deputy director-general for investment and international.
Annika Eriksgaard Melander replaces Elena Flores as director of directorate D (International economic and financial relations, global governance) in an acting capacity.

Energy (ENER)
Paula Pinho has been appointed as director of directorate B (Just Transition, Consumers, Energy Efficiency and Innovation) to replace Hans Van Steen who has been performing the role in an acting capacity. A lawyer by training, Pinho has been head of unit in charge of renewables and energy system integration policy since the beginning of this year, and acting director between 2019 and 2020, in charge of energy strategy and coordination of energy policy in the context of the Green Deal and Recovery.

Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (GROW)
As of 16 March, DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs has changed its organisational structure to “help Europe’s industrial ecosystems recover more effectively from the COVID-crisis and to achieve the EU's digital and green goals”. In parallel with these changes, the executive agencies that the Commission entrusts with the implementation of spending programmes are also undergoing reform. From 1 April 2021, ‘EASME’ (The Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) will become ‘EISMEA’ (European Innovation Council and SMEs) and a new agency, ‘HaDEA’ (Health and Digital) will be created.

For a comprehensive overview of the new structure of DG GROW, please visit

Research and Innovation (RTD)
J Larsson replaces Roman Arjona Gracia as head of unit A1 (Chief Economist - R&I Strategy & Foresight) in an acting capacity.

Secretariat-General (SG)
Blanca Llinas Teres has been appointed head of unit B2 (Written, Empowerment & Delegation Procedures) filling a vacant position.
Vesa Terävä has been appointed head of unit D2 (European Green Deal), filling a vacant position.

Other EU Institutions and Agencies

European Central Bank
Michael Steen is leaving his role as Head of Global Media Relations division. Peter Ehrlich will replace him on a temporary basis.

Public Affairs

European Road Assessment Programme (EuroRAP)
Lina Konstantinopoulou has stepped down from her position as secretary-general and will be replaced by Marianne Dwarshuis at the end of this month. Dwarshuis will perform the role in an acting capacity until Association’s General Assembly in June.

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National News

The Netherlands
With over 98% of votes counted, Mark Rutte’s People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (ALDE) looks to have won 35 seats, a gain of two since the previous election. The Democrats 66 (ALDE) party came in second place with 23 seats, gaining four since the last election. With these results, Mark Rutte has won a fourth term and he is expected to form a four-party government with D66 and smaller parties, possibly the The Christian Democratic Appeal (EPP) and/or The Christian Union (EPP).
The elections come after Rutte’s cabinet resigned earlier this year over a child benefits scandal. Rutte has stayed on in a caretaker capacity since the resignation of his government.

Health minister Marek Krajci has resigned over a dispute concerning the Sputnik V vaccine. Earlier in the week, prime minister Igor Matovic had made the surprise announcement that his government had bought the Russian vaccine despite it not having EU safety clearance. Eduard Heger has replaced Krajci as minister for health in an acting capacity.

Pablo Iglesias has stepped down as deputy prime minister to run in Madrid’s May regional elections. Iglesias, who is the leader of the Unidas Podemos party, made the decision days after Madrid’s regional president Isabel Díaz Ayuso called a snap regional election. Labour minister Yolanda Díaz is expected to replace Iglesias in his previous role, although she will serve as third deputy as opposed to second. Nadia Calviño is expected to become second deputy.

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Read the most recent articles written by Mia Bartoloni - Movers and Shakers | 16 July 2021