Parliament elects new European Commission
After the hearings of the Commissioners-designate by the committees in charge of their respective portfolios earlier this month, today the Parliament’s plenary session had its vote of investiture on the Commission as a whole. The EPP, S&D and ALDE groups representing the overwhelming majority have supported Juncker’s team, the ECR has abstained and the Greens, GUE and EFDD have voted against. With 423 votes in favour, 209 votes against 67 abstentions, the new Commission has now officially been put in place.
In his speech prior to the vote, Jean-Claude Juncker reminded the MEPs of Europe’s shaky and unstable neighbourhood due to the Ukraine and Syria crises, mass immigration from Africa and the Ebola epidemic outbreak: it was of an utmost importance to face these problems and time for action is now, he said.
He also addressed the concerns that were raised by MEPs during and after the hearings: Commissioners-designate who failed to convince the Parliament were replaced and sustainable development has been included in Vice-President Timmermans’ remit. He reiterated the latter’s political weight in that there will be no investor-to-state dispute clause in TTIP if Timmermans would not agree with it too.
Finally, he announced an ambitious 300 EUR billion investment package for jobs, growth and competitiveness, to be presented before Christmas by Commissioner Katainen.
To see list of new Commissionners please click here.