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Ursula von der Leyen nominated as next EU Commission chief

Ursula von der Leyen nominated as next EU Commission chief

Ursula von der Leyen - Photo Jim Mattis

(BRUSSELS) - The EU at a special summit Tuesday proposed Ursula von der Leyen, Germany's German defence minister and a member of the centre-right CDU, as candidate for president of the European Commission.

Ms von der Leyen is the first woman in German history to hold the office of defence minister. Born and raised in Brussels as a native French and German speaker, she is a physician by profession.

Following the nomination, it will be for the European Parliament to consider Ursula von der Leyen for Commission President. If elected, she will be the first woman to lead the European Commission.

The meeting of the Special European Council on 30 June, 1 and 2 July to agree on nominations for the EU's top jobs followed intense consultations between European Council President Donald Tusk and the heads of state or government and the European Parliament.

The Council elected Charles Michel as the new President of the European Council and nominated Josep Borell Fontelles as candidate for the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Christine Lagarde as candidate for the President of the European Central Bank.

Current Council president Donald Tusk welcomed the decisions. "Charles Michel will, with his experience as Belgian Prime Minister, be ideal for finding consensus and building unity among Member States," he said.

The President of the European Council is elected for the period from 1 December 2019 until 31 May 2022. The mandate of two and a half years of the President of the European Council is renewable once. The European Council also welcomed the decision of the heads of state or government of the member states whose currency is the euro to appoint Charles Michel as President of the Euro Summit, for the same term of office.

The formal appointment of the High Representative by the European Council requires the agreement of the President-elect of the Commission.

The President of the Commission, the High Representative and the other members of the Commission will be subject as a body to a vote of consent by the European Parliament, before the formal appointment by the European Council. Their term of office will last 5 years from the end of the current Commission until 31 October 2024.

Regarding the candidate for President of the European Central Bank, the European Council will take a formal decision on the appointment on the basis of a Council recommendation, after having consulted the European Parliament and the ECB's Governing Council. The mandate for the President of the European Central Bank is for 8 years non-renewable.

European Council conclusions, 30 June - 2 July 2019


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