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Leyen presents nominees for next EC

Urpilainen nominated as EU Commissioner

Published : 10 Sep 2019, 23:07

Updated : 11 Sep 2019, 12:46

  DF Report
Jutta Urpilainen. File Photo Finnish Government.

Suomen Sosialidemokraattinen Puolue (Social Democratic Party of Finland -SDP) lawmaker Jutta Urpilainen has been nominated as a commissioner of the next European Commission, to be appointed for the term 2019-2024.

President-elect of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen on Tuesday unveiled her nominees for the next European Commission.

Urpilainen has been a member of parliament since 2003. In 2011-2014, she served as the minister of finance, also deputising for the prime minister.

She has also served as deputy speaker of parliament and a member of the Parliamentary Supervisory Council of the Bank of Finland.

She has been a deputy member of the Finnish delegation to the Council of Europe, member of the Finnish Delegation to the Nordic Council, and chair of the Executive Board of the Finnish Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). She has also served as Foreign Minister’s Special Representative on Mediation.

News agency Xinhua adds: Jutta Urpilainen, the nominee for the new post as EU commissioner for international partnerships, said on Tuesday "a new strategic companionship must be built between the EU and Africa".

She told Finnish media in Brussels that also the private sector must join in creating investments, employment and permanent wellbeing in Africa.

Ursula von der Leyen, president-elect of the European Commission, published the names of the candidates and their portfolios on Tuesday in Brussels.

In her brief to Urpilainen, Von der Leyen wrote that Urpilainen should draw up a new Africa strategy for the EU.

As a second matter, Von der Leyen also said Urpilainen should aim at creating agreements with countries that immigrants transit through or come from. Urpilainen's assignment covers also development cooperation.

Commenting on the immigration issue, Urpilainen said living conditions in the countries of origin must be improved.

Urpilainen said her portfolio combines the major issues of current generations such as the climate change, new security threats, an increase in inequality and what she described as "the crisis of democracy".

Urpilainen would have to balance between the published values of the EU and the demands from some EU member countries to "close the borders".

Following is the lineup of nominated vice-presidents and commissioners.

Executive Vice-Presidents:

Frans Timmermans (the Netherlands), coordinating the work on the European Green Deal and managing climate action policy.

Margrethe Vestager (Denmark), coordinating whole agenda on a Europe fit for the digital age and being the Commissioner for Competition.

Valdis Dombrovskis (Latvia), coordinating the work on an Economy that Works for People and being the commissioner for financial services.

Five other Vice-Presidents: Josep Borrell (Spain), High representative for foreign affairs and security policy.

Vera Jourova (Czech Republic), Values and Transparency.

Margaritis Schinas (Greece), Protecting European Way of Life.

Maros Sefcovic (Slovakia), Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight.

Dubravka Suica (Croatia), Democracy and Demography.

Commissioners-designate are as follows:

Johannes Hahn (Austria), Budget and Administration. Didier Reynders (Belgium), Justice. Mariya Gabriel (Bulgaria), Innovation and Youth. Stella Kyriakides (Cyprus), Health. Kadri Simson (Estonia), Energy. Jutta Urpilainen (Finland), International Partnerships. Sylvie Goulard (France), Industrial policy and promote the Digital Single Market. Laszlo Trocsanyi (Hungary), Neighbourhood and Enlargement. Phil Hogan (Ireland), Trade. Paolo Gentiloni (Italy), Economy. Virginijus Sinkevicius (Lithuania), Environment and Oceans. Nicolas Schmit (Luxembourg), Jobs. Helena Dalli (Malta), Equality. Janusz Wojciechowski (Poland), Agriculture. Elisa Ferreira (Portugal), Cohesion and Reforms. Rovana Plumb (Romania), Transport. Janez Lenarcic (Slovenia), Crisis Management. Ylva Johansson (Sweden), Home Affairs.