Movers and Shakers | 30 April 2018

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

30 Apr 2018

Today's Movers & Shakers are about: news about MEPS, latest appointments in the Commission and public affairs, EEAS, Brexit and more. 

 
European Parliament:

Political groups:  
Mercedes BRESSO (IT) was elected as vice-chair of the S&D group.   

Composition of the committees and delegations: 
Substitutes: 

Jiří PAYNE (EFDD, CZ) has left the delegation for relations with the Maghreb countries and the Arab Maghreb Union (D-MAG) and joined the sub-committee on human rights (DROI). 
Aymeric CHAUPRADE (EFDD, FR) joined the committee on industry, research and energy (ITRE), the delegation to the Cariforum-EU parliamentary committee (D-CAR), the delegation for relations with the Maghreb countries and the Arab Maghreb Union (D-MAG), the delegation for relations with Mercosur (D-MER), the delegation for relations with the People's Republic of China (D-CN) and the delegation to the Euronest parliamentary assembly (D-EPA). 
Daniel HANNAN (ECR, UK) left the committee on constitutional affairs (AFCO). 
David COBURN (EFDD, UK) left the committee on industry, research and energy (ITRE) and joined the committee on foreign affairs (AFET).  

 

Get to know:

Biljana BORZAN (S&D, HR) in 5 questions.
Mrs BORZAN has been an MEP since 2014, while from 2012 to 2013 she was an observer to the European Parliament. She is member of the committee on environment, public health an food safety (ENVI) and the delegation to the EU-former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Joint Parliamentary Committee (D-MK). She was rapporteur on the initiative on resource efficiency: reducing food waste, improving food safety and this year's MEP awards winner of women's rights and gender equality category.


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Interview with Antanas GUOGA (EPP, LT):

Antanas GUOGA talked to the Parliament Magazine about his passion for new technologies and the opportunities that they can provide. A former poker player, GUOGA has been an MEP since 2014 and he is Vice-Chair of the delegation to the EU-Armenia and EU-Azerbaijan parliamentary cooperation committees and the EU-Georgia parliamentary association committee (D-SCA). He talks about bitcoin and why he is betting on blockchain technologies. Read the interview

 

European Commission:

Commissioners’ cabinets: 
Cabinet of Vytenis ANDRIUKAITIS:
 Alina TIMOFTE joined as member, replacing Paula DUARTE GASPAR, who has now moved to DG REGIO. Among other things, Ms TIMOFTE will be in charge of the performance of national systems, ECDC, health programme and chronic diseases, foreign affairs and security policy, migration, home affairs and citizenship.  

Directorates-General: 
Budget:  

Hans GEVAERT was appointed as head of unit, corporate financial and accounting systems, having previously served as head of unit, user service management.  
Directorate C- Budget Execution (General Budget and EDF): Yannos ASIMAKIS was appointed as head of unit, ABAC-user service management, replacing Hans GEVAERT. Ilona LOESER was appointed as head of unit, financial reporting, replacing Yannos ASIMAKIS.  

Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CONNECT): 
Directorate E – Future Networks: Olivier BRINGER was appointed as acting head of unit, next generation internet, replacing Peter FATELNIG, who was also acting in the role.   
Directorate F - Digital Single Market: Fabrizia BENINI was appointed as head of unit, digital economy and skills, replacing Alexander RIEDL, who was acting in the role.  
Directorate G- Data: Rehana SCHWINNINGER-LADAK was appointed as head of unit, data applications and creativity, replacing Federico MILANI who was acting in the role.  

Maritime affairs and Fisheries (MARE): 
Directorate D – Fisheries policy Mediterranean and Black Sea: Fabio GALETTI was appointed as acting head of unit, Structural Support Mediterranean, Black Sea and Landlocked Member States, replacing Fabrizia BENINI.  

Regional and Urban Policy (REGIO):  
Directorate A – Budget, Communication and General affairs: Paula DUARTE GASPAR was appointed as head of unit, Outermost regions, replacing Sabine BOURDY.  
Directorate D- Territorial Cooperation, Macro-Regions, Interreg and Programme Implementation I: Carmen GONZALEZ HERNANDEZ was appointed as head of unit, Denmark, Ireland, Sweden and the UK, replacing Lena ANDERSSON PENCH, who was acting in the role.  
Directorate G – Smart and Sustainable Growth and Programme Implementation IV: Carole MANCEL-BLANCHARD was appointed as head of unit, Portugal and Spain, replacing Aderito PINTO. 

 

European External Action Service (EEAS):

Erika FERRER was appointed as head of unit, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, replacing Sibylle BIKAR, who was acting in the role.
 


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Public affairs:

Got any new appointment you would like us to include in our next newsletter? Contact Ifigenia Balkoura!


European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA): Stéphane MARTIN was re-elected as Chair. Stephan LOERKE, Charo Fernando MAGARZO and Mathilde FIQUET were also re-elected as officers to support the Chair.  

European Coordination Committee of the Radiological, Electromedical and Healthcare IT Industry (COCIR): Karine IFFOUR joined the team as Digital Health Director. Karine, a French national, has 15 years’ experience in EU public affairs in health and ICT sectors. She was the Managing Director of the Consultancy EOS BXL in Brussels, campaigning for Bratislava's candidature to host the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Prior to joining EOS BXL, she managed IEEE in Brussels for four years, and served as advisor to the Secretary General of Normapme and as Vice-Chair of the General Assembly for the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI). She replaces Inés HERNANDO.  

International Council of Marine Industry Association (ICOMIA): Jeff WASIL was elected as the new chair of the ICOMIA Marine Engine Committee (IMEC). Tom TVEITAN was elected as Vice-Chair.  
 

 
News in a nutshell:

Brexit: UK Home Secretary Amber RUDD resigned on Sunday 29 April after revelations she was aware of targets for removing illegal immigrants. RUDD was already under pressure to resign over her handling of the Windrush scandal. Sajid JAVID was appointed as the new Home Secretary.

She was also put at odds with the UK government, after she said it was still working on its final policy on the customs unions. When asked whether she believed the UK could remain in the customs union after Brexit, RUDD replied, "I'm afraid I'm not going to get drawn on that". However, she later tweeted that the UK would leave the customs union when it leaves the EU.

Prior to this, the UK government suffered another defeat in the House of Lords on Monday 23 April, after Lords voted 316 to 245 in favour of an amendment of the Withdrawal Bill calling for the Charter of Fundamental Rights to be incorporated in the UK law post Brexit. This is the government's third defeat in just five days, after Lords voted last week for the UK to stay in the customs union and the EU rejected its proposal for avoiding a hard border in Ireland.  

EU chief negotiator Michel BARNIER delivered a speech at Hannover Messe, where he listened to business representatives' concerns and preparations for Brexit. In his speech, BARNIER said that "it is up to the UK to come up with its vision for the future, which should confirm the UK's red lines or adapt them". 

On Tuesday 24 April, a meeting on the citizens' rights and particularly on the registration procedure for the EU citizens living in the UK was held in the European Parliament. The meeting was attended by the Parliament's Brexit steering group, MEPs from various committees (AFCO, LIBE, PETI, EMPL, JURI) focusing on the citizens' rights, the 3 million group and representatives of the UK Home Department, who presented the UK's online application system for the EU citizens. Following the debate and after listening to MEPs' concerns, Parliament's chief negotiator Guy VERHOFSTADT will write to UK Home Secretary outlining the House's recommendations. Among the main concerns is the fact that the mobile application for the EU nationals seeking to stay in the UK post Brexit will not work on iphones, as Catherine BEARDER (ALDE, UK) highlighted. VERHOFSTADT mentioned that EU citizens' anxiety was further renewed in the wake of how the Windrush generation was recently treated in the UK. 

Following his visit to Rotterdam, Seb DANCE (S&D, UK) also raised his concerns about leaving the customs union. The London MEP explained that opting out of the customs union will have a direct effect on the transfer of material goods and food from the continent to the UK, while the necessary bureaucracy and checks that will be introduced will mean more cost for the UK consumers.  

Slovakia: Denisa SAKOVÁ was appointed as the new interior minister. She replaced Tomáš DRUCKER resigned after three weeks in office.  




 

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

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