Movers and Shakers | 4 July 2016

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

By Ifigenia Balkoura

04 Jul 2016

European Parliament:

Manuel António dos SANTOS (S&D, PT) officially joined the parliament on 28 June to replace Elisa FERREIRA. Dos SANTOS was previously an MEP from 2001 to 2009.

Urszula KRUPA (ECR, PL), who has served as an MEP from 2004 to 2009 also joined the parliament, following the departure of Janusz WOJCIECHOWSKI.

Members of the Committees, Subcommittees and the Delegations:
Pedro SILVA PEREIRA (S&D, PT) joined the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON).

Manuel António dos SANTOS (S&D, PT) joined the Committee on Development (DEVE) and the Delegation to the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (D-LAT).

Substitutes of the Committees, Subcommittees and the Delegations:
András GYÜRK (EPP, HU) left the Delegation to the EU-Armenia and EU-Azerbaijan Parliamentary Cooperation Committees and the EU-Georgia Parliamentary Association Committee (D-SCA) and the Delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly (D-EPA) and joined the Delegation for relations with the countries of Central America (D-CAM) and the Delegation to the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (D-LAT).

Frank ENGEL (EPP, LU) left the Delegation for relations with the countries of Central America (D-CAM) and the Delegation to the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (D-LAT) and joined the Delegation to the EU-Armenia and EU-Azerbaijan Parliamentary Cooperation Committees and the EU-Georgia Parliamentary Association Committee (D-SCA) and the Delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly (D-EPA).

Manuel António dos SANTOS (S&D, PT) joined the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO), the Delegation to the EU-Chile Joint Parliamentary Committee (D-CL) and the Delegation to the EU-Russia Parliamentary Cooperation Committee (D-RU).

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The following MEPs were appointed rapporteurs:

Marlene MIZZI (MT) S&D shadow rapporteur on the "Integrated approach to Sport Policy: Good Governance, accessibility and integrity”. Hannu TAKKULA (ALDE, FI) is the rapporteur.

Agnes JONGERIUS (S&D, NL) and Elisabeth MORIN-CHARTIER (EPP, FR) on the “Posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services”.

Marita Ulvskog (S&D, SE) on the “Protection of workers from exposure to carcinogens or mutagens at work: exposure limit values” Directive.

Maria Joao Rodrigues (S&D, PT) on the “European pillar of social rights”.


The result of the EU referendum has prompted calls in some quarters for those MEPs who supported a Brexit to stand down. A Parliament spokesperson told Parliament Magazine, "As long as the UK is a member of the EU it will be entitled to 73 seats in the European Parliament of 751. Read more.

Dods People EU has prepared a graph with the current seat breakdown and another that reflects how the seat breakdown of the Parliament would look like without the UK MEPs.

Current seat breakdown:

Without UK MEPs:

European Commission:

Task Force for Strategic Issues related to the UK Referendum:
At a meeting of the College of Commissioners, on 27 June, President JUNCKER informed the College of his decision to dissolve the Task Force. Its members will remain in function until all the administrative and archiving procedures necessary for the dissolution are completed and at the latest until 30 September 2016. All questions related to the situation in the UK will as of now be centralised by the Secretary-General of the European Commission. All members of the Task Force will return to their prior roles in the Commission. The Task Force supported the negotiation of the new Settlement for the UK which was agreed at the 18-19 February European Council, and which has ceased to exist following the UK Referendum.

Directorates General:
Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CONNECT):
DG CONNECT was reorganised on 1 July. The most important changes are the creation of a new Directorate (Directorate I) for “Media Policy” (reporting to Claire BURY) and the future increase of staff in Luxembourg with the establishment of two additional Directorate offices. By 2020 the staff will be reduced by 95 persons and the units currently from 9 to 5. Director-General Roberto VIOLA and Deputy Directors-General Gail KENT and Claire BURY remain in their positions.

Directorate A - Components and Systems is now “Digital Industry” (partially in Luxembourg).
Directorate C – Excellence in Science is now “Digital Excellence and Science Infrastructure” (partially in Luxembourg).
Directorate D – Cooperation is now “Policy Strategy and Outreach”.
Directorate E – Net Futures is now “Future Networks”.
Directorate F – Digital Economy and Coordination is now “Digital Single Market”.
Directorate G – Media and Data is now “Data” (in Luxembourg).
Directorate H – Digital Society, Trust and Security is now “Digital Society, Trust and Cyber Security” (partially in Luxembourg).

More details to follow next week.

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Public affairs:

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EDSO for smart grids: João TORRES was re-elected as Chair. The mandates of Christian BUCHEL, Antonio ESPINOSA DE LOS MONTEROS and Livio GALLO were renewed while Joachim SCHNEIDER was appointed as the fourth Vice-Chair.

FTTH Council Europe: Erzsébet FITORI was appointed as the new Director-General as of 1 September 2016.

Hydrogen Europe: Director of Research and Technologies at ENGIE, Raphaël SCHOENTGEN was elected as the new Chair. Didier PFLEGER, Senior Vice President at Alstom was also elected as the new Treasurer, and Valérie BOUILLON-DELPORTE, New Business Opportunities Director at Michelin as Transport Chair. Andreas FROEMMEL, Vice-President of Business and Commercial Development at FCES, will become Vice-Chair and will be focusing on the Energy Solutions pillar.

International Federation for Animal Health Europe (IFAH): Wijnand DE BRUIJN was appointed as the new Chairman, replacing Christian BEHM who retires.

News Media Europe: Wout van WIJK was appointed as the new Executive Director, replacing Martin KALA ad of 1 July. Mr van WIJK was previously Senior EU Public Affairs Manager at Huawei. The newly established association has rounded out its team with the appointment of Francesco VINCI as Policy Advisor. VINCI joined from acumen public affairs where he working as a consultant.

PRACE, the Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe: Anwar OSSEYRAN and Sergi GIRONA were elected as Chair and Vice-Chair respectively for a two-year mandate.


News in a nutshell:

European parliament: MEPs are in Strasbourg for the plenary session from Monday 4 to Thursday 7 July.

EU Presidency: Slovakia took over the rotating EU presidency from the Netherlands on Friday 1 July for six months.

Member states:
The Constitutional court has overturned the result of the presidential runoff following an investigation that revealed irregularities in the vote count. Fresh election will be held likely in September or October. In the meantime President Heinz FISCHER will be replaced by three parliamentary officials, including Norbert HOFER who was defeated in the elections by Alexander VAN DER BELLEN and filed the legal challenge. The annulment comes a week before VAN DER BELLEN was due to be sworn in.

United Kingdom: Britain’s decision to leave the European bloc, along with the resignation of Prime Minister David CAMERON, have rocked the UK political scene. Over half of the Labour’s strong frontbench team have resigned or been sacked. On the Conservatives side, several surprise candidates announced their intention to run for Tory leader and Prime Minister. Read more.
The UK is due to assume the EU Council presidency in mid-2017, but this has been cast into serious doubt by the decision to leave the EU. Read more.
On 29 June, the UK government appointed the Second Permanent Secretary at the Home Office, Oliver ROBBINS as head of a new EU Unit in the Cabinet Office as of 4 July. He will be responsible for overseeing relationship negotiations with the EU and the rest of the world, as well as taking responsibility for the European and Global Issues Secretariat.
On 28 June, First Minister Nicola STURGEON, Scottish National Party announced the formation of a group to advise on Scotland’s relationship with the EU. The ‘Standing Council on Europe’ is chaired by Professor Anton MUSCATELLI and comprises of specialists in legal, financial, business and diplomatic matters. The group will also include MEPs David MARTIN (S&D) and Alyn SMITH (Greens-EFA) and Fabian ZULEEG of the European Policy Centre, Brussels.

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

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