Movers and Shakers | 29 November 2019


Today’s Movers & Shakers are about: Plenary week highlights, welcome to the new College of Commissioners for 2019-24, the new Slovenian Permanent Representative, resignation of two Maltese ministers, latest EU institutional and agency appointments, public affairs and more!


European Parliament

The German authorities have forwarded a request to waive the immunity of Gunnar BECK (ID, DE) in relation to the reopening of criminal investigations against him by the Düsseldorf Public Prosecutor.

The Bulgarian authorities have forwarded a request to waive the immunity of Elena YONCHEVA (S&D, BG) in relation to ongoing criminal proceedings brought against him by the Specialised Public Prosecutor.

Committees and Delegations

Culture and Education Committee (CULT)
Dominiqe BILDE (ID, FR), who was previously a substitute, has left the committee. Catherine GRISET (ID, FR) moves from member to substitute.

Gilbert COLLARD (ID, FR) joins as a member.

Environment, Public Health and Food Saftey Committee (ENVI)
Dan-Ştefan MOTREANU (EPP, RO) replaces Cristian-Silviu BUŞOI (EPP, RO) as a member.

Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE)
Cristian-Silviu BUŞOI (EPP, RO) replaces Adina-Ioana VĂLEAN (EPP, RO) as a member.

Legal Affairs Committee (JURI)
Gilbert COLLARD (ID, FR) who was previously a member, has left the committee. He is replaced by Jean-Paul GARRAUD (ID, FR).

Canada Delegation (D-CA)
Ruža TOMAŠIĆ (ECR, HR) joins as a member replacing Johan VAN OVERTVELDT (ECR, BE), who leaves the committee.

People’s Republic of China Delegation (D-CN)
Joëlle MÉLIN (ID, FR) has joined as a substitute.

Union for the Mediterranean Delegation (D-MED)
Catherine GRISET (ID, FR) joins as a substitute.

Plenary highlights

On Thursday, the Parliament succeeded in declaring a climate and environmental emergency and asked the EU to take action. MEPs adopted two draft resolutions calling on the EU to adopt net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050.

Parliament also approved the 2020 budget after getting an additional €850 million for investment in climate action, innovation and youth.

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European Commission

After presenting her team of Commissioner-designates to the Parliament during Plenary on Wednesday, MEPs approved Ursula VON DER LEYEN’s Commission with 461 votes in favour, 157 against and 89 abstentions. Outgoing Commission president Jean-Claude JUNCKER can now hand over the reins to VON DER LEYEN and the team can commence officially this Sunday 1 December. Here is the final run through of the College for 2019-24:

Ursula VON DER LEYEN (EPP, DE) - President
Frans TIMMERMANS (S&D, NL) - Executive vice-president for European Green Deal
Margrethe VESTAGER (RE, DK) - Executive vice-president for Europe fit for Digital Age
Valdis DOMBROVSKIS (EPP, LV) - Executive vice-president for an Economy that Works for People

Josep BORRELL (S&D, ES) – Vice-president/ High representative for a Stronger Europe in the World
Dubravka ŠUICA (EPP, HR) - Vice-president for Democracy and Demography
Věra JOUROVÁ (RE, CZ) - Vice-president for Values and Transparency
Margaritis SCHINAS (EPP, EL) – Vice-president for Promoting the European Way of Life
Maroš ŠEFČOVIČ (S&D, SK) – Vice-president for Interninstitutional Relations and Foresight

Johannes HAHN (EPP, AT) - Budget and Administration
Janusz WOJCIECHOWSKI (ECR, PL)– Agriculture
Elisa FERREIRA (S&D, PT) – Cohesion and Reforms
Janez LENARČIČ (RE, SI) – Crisis Management
Kadri SIMSON (RE, EE) – Energy
Helena DALLI (S&D, MT) – Equality
Stella KYRIAKIDES (EPP, CY) – Health
Ylva JOHANSSON (S&D, SE) – Home Affairs
Mariya GABRIEL (EPP, BG) – Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth
Jutta URPILAINEN (S&D, FI)  – International Partnerships
Nicolas SCHMIT (S&D, LU) – Jobs and Social Rights
Didier REYNDERS (RE, BE) – Justice
Olivér VÁRHELYI (EPP*, HU) – Neighbourhood and Enlargement
Paolo GENTILONI (S&D, IT)  – Economy
Virginijus SINKEVIČIUS (Greens, LT) – Environments, Oceans and Fisheries
Thierry BRETON (RE, FR) – Internal Market
Phil HOGAN (EPP, IE) – Trade
Adina-Ioana VĂLEAN (EPP, RO) – Transport

*Official EPP membership suspended

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Permanent Representations

Iztok JARC has succeeded Janez LENARČIČ as Slovenia’s permanent representative to the EU. LENARČIČ is expected to be appointed as Commissioner for crisis management in president-elect Ursula VON DER LEYEN’s new team.

EU Institutions and Agencies

European Data Protection Supervisor
MEPs from the Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee voted for Wojciech WIEWIÓROWSKI (PL) as European Data Protection Supervisor. WIEWIÓROWSKI is currently the temporary incumbent, who took over shortly after the passing of Giovanni BUTTARELLI.

European Union Agency for Railways (ERA)
The Management Board has extended the term of Executive Director Josef DOPPELBAUER for a second five-year term.

Public Affairs

European Agri-Cooperatives (Cogeca)
Ramon ARMENGOL has been unanimously elected as president. ARMENGOL will replace outgoing president Thomas MAGNUSSON.

Invest Europe
Martin BRESSON has been appointed as Director of Public Affairs to lead the association’s advocacy work with high-ranking European policymakers and regulators.

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National News

Two members of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat’s team resigned this week; minister for Tourism Konrad MIZZI and Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Business Christian CARDONA. This follows the Maltese authority's investigation into the murder of journalist Daphne Galizia.

Centrist President Klaus IOHANNIS won the second round of the presidential election with just over 63 per cent of the vote. The Social Democrat (PSD) party had one of its worst results, with leader Viorica DANCILA receiving 37 per cent.

DANCILA has quit as the head of The Social Democrat Party following the poor results in the presidential elections. The president of the lower chamber of the Romanian Parliament, Marcel CIOLACU will step in as the interim leader until February 2020, when a new leader will be elected.

Members of the Socialist Party (S&D) have voted in favour of a coalition with Unidas Podemos. However, the Socialist Party still needs to win support from the Republic Left of Catalonia in order to have a majority in Parliament.


Read the most recent articles written by Mia Bartoloni and Megan MacDougall - Movers and Shakers | 9 April 2020