Keep track of developments in the European institutions and public affairs with our Movers and Shakers column.
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Committees and Delegations
Thijs Reuten (S&D, NL) joins the Foreign Affairs Committee (AFET) and the North Macedonia Delegation (D-MK).
Michiel Hoogeveen (ECR, NL) has joined the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee (ECON).
Thijs Reuten (S&D, NL) joins the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) and the Turkey Delegation (D-TR).
Michiel Hoogeveen (ECR, NL) has joined the International Trade Committee (INTA), the Women’s Rights and Gender Equality Committee (FEMM) and the Korean Peninsula Delegation (D-KOR).
Not mentioned in last week’s edition was the appointment of Rob Roos (NL) to the position of vice-president of the group on Tuesday 20 April. Roos replaces Derk Jan Eppink, former Dutch MEP who left the Parliament at the beginning of April to take up new functions in the Hague.
After seeing its numbers shrink to 175 MEPs following the departure of Hungarian members of the Fidesz party, the group has now expanded once more after admitting three MEPs - Isabella Adinolfi (IT), Andrea Caroppo (IT) and Helmut Geuking (DE).
A former 5Stars MEP Adinolfi is one of the latest MEPs to leave the Italian party which has seen its numbers in Parliament halved over the past six months. Andrea Caroppo is formerly of the Italian party, the League but left in August 2019. Geuking joins the group as a former member of the ECR.
Greek MEP Ioannis Lagos, who was convicted in October for leading the Golden Dawn party as a ‘criminal organisation’, was arrested on Tuesday, one day after his Parliamentary immunity was lifted. Lagos has been told that he will be extradited to Athens.
Regulatory Scrutiny Board (RSB)
Antonio Nicita (IT) has been appointed principal adviser and will serve as a member of the RSB with date of effect to be determined at a later time. Nicita will contribute to the Commission’s better Regulation Policy by scrutinising the quality of impact assessments, ex-post evaluations, fitness-checks and issuing opinions on the related draft reports. He brings with him ample experience as a well-regarded regulatory adviser having previously served as member of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Steering group on regulation and emerging technologies and as Commissioner of the Italian Telecoms, Media and Postal Regulatory Authority (AGCOM) from 2014-16.
Directorates-General and Services
Helena König leaves her role as deputy director-general in charge of directorates B and C.
Maria Martin-Prat moves to a new role as deputy director-general in charge of directorates D and E. Martin-Prat was previously director of directorate B (Asia (I), Services and Digital Trade, Investment and Intellectual Property), a role which has not yet been filled.
European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (ACEA)
Rudi Kuchta, senior vice-president and head of bus product and sales at MAN, has been appointed as the association’s new chair to lead its bus and coach division succeeding Håkan Agnevall of Volvo Buses.
European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF)
Henk Swarttouw has been appointed president. Swarttouw previously served in the Dutch foreign service for more than 30 years including as ambassador to Finland and Denmark.
Robin Hamman has been appointed as group director of digital strategy as part of the firm’s decision to put digital at the heart of its integrated offering. An expert in the field of digital and social media, Hamman made his name at the BBC before moving onto role at Edelman and FleishmanHillard.
Open Society Foundations
Daniela Schwarzer will take on the newly created role of executive director for Europe and Eurasia on 1 May. A renowned expert in in European affairs and international relations, Schwarzer most recently served as director and CEO at the German Council on Foreign Relations.
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German Elections 2021 - stay informed about candidates and more!
Spotlight on...Armin Laschet (CDU-CSU)
After prevailing over leader of the Christian Social Union (CSU) Markus Söder in a vote amongst the party’s executive board members, chair of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) Armin Laschet was chosen as the joint CDU-CSU chancellor candidate last week.
In the past, occupying the post of CDU chair, as Angela Merkel once did, has been seen as a shoo-in for the role of Chancellor, but as it stands only 15% of Germans would vote for Laschet if an election was held today.
Laschet has proclaimed himself to be part of the ‘Christian’ rather than ‘Conservative’ faction of the CDU, however a decision earlier this week to include Friedrich Merz in his campaign has been seen as a move to appease the more conservative members in a party that is struggling for unity.
As far as policy priorities are concerned, Laschet is a proponent of equal opportunity especially in regard to the labour market and education. He has pushed for wider European integration and sees German export orientation as dependent on the European Single Market. Laschet has also said that he would like to see common foreign and security policy strengthened and the transatlantic partnership utilised as a vehicle to promote a common trade and climate policy.
Coming up in the next edition of Movers and Shakers
Next week in the spotlight will be Green party candidate Annalena Baerbock who is currently performing best in the polls.
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Ioana Mihăilă was sworn in as the new minister for health last Wednesday. Mihăilă’s appointment comes a week after former health minister Vlad Voiculescu left the position under orders from prime minister Florin Cîţu. Mihăilă manages a medical company in Oradea, Dermalite, and is the medical coordinator of the Medena Clinic in Oradea. On her new mandate, Mihăilă has said that her priority will be to solve the health crisis through concrete measures to support hospitals through restoring infrastructure and supporting outpatient units and family medicine.
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