Press Release: “New European Commission: Expectations and Concerns”, Brussels, 23 October 2014
Out of the Box International welcomes the vote during European Parliament plenary session in Strasbourg during which Jean-Claude Juncker’s college of Commissioner’s has been approved.
“After weeks and months of sometimes unnecessary political bickering, the new Commission can finally assume its responsibility and act on the pressing economic, social and environmental issues. Some of the Commissioners have highly doubtful credibility to deal with the portfolio they have been assigned to – think of Caneta or Navracsic. Despite of the fact that “citizenship” has been removed from Navracsic’s portfolio, his closeness to the now openly authoritarian Hungarian PM is a cause of great concern. Caneta’s lame attempts to distance himself from fossil fuel industry haven’t reassured a skeptical European public about his nomination.
Nevertheless, Out of the Box strongly believes that the Juncker-Timmermans team has a historic opportunity to turn the Commission from a powerless broker among influential Member States into an agile, pro-active and visionary executive branch of the Union. Juncker’s attempts to streamline the work of the college of commissioners will soon be tested; it was certainly a step in the right direction. More than ever, Europe needs a strong European Commission.
As a think-tank, which focuses on innovative social policies, we strongly hope that the incoming Commission will recognize the importance of stimulating new, innovative ways of tackling some persistent economic and social issues. The announced investment plan is certainly a sine qua non of sailing out of the treacherous waters of recession and sluggish recovery, but it is far from panacea. Europe needs to reinvent itself and face down staggering youth unemployment, looming energy crisis, and persistent social exclusion. European civil society has the capacity to act and the will to be at the heart of this process. We hope that Juncker’s Commission will not lag behind.”
Out of the Box International