Věra Jourová, the European Commission Vice-President nominee, will be
asked how she can independently supervise the observance of rule of law in
the Czech Republic during her hearing in the European Parliament next
Monday, the Czech News Agency reports. Ms. Jourová, who was chosen as
European Commission Vice-President for values and transparency by the
future commission president Ursula von Der Leyen, was proposed as the Czech
candidate by the government of Andrej Babiš, who was found to be in a
conflict of interests by a preliminary EU audit in May.
Damian Boeselager, a German MEP on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs (AFCO), told the Czech News Agency that unlike some Czech MEPs, Ms. Jourová has never opposed Mr Babiš and so it must be clear that she will not disregard any criticism regarding the rule of law in the Czech Republic.
Just as for other EU Commission candidates, Ms. Jourova’s hearing will take three hours, during which MEPs will have the opportunity to ask a total of 25 questions.
The Czech Republic’s Věra Jourová, responsible for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality in the outgoing European Commission, is likely to return to Brussels in a new role and with a higher status. If her candidacy is approved by MEPs in the coming weeks, Jourová will become this country’s first Vice President as of November, and likely split the “rule-of-law” portfolio with the next EU Commissioner for Justice.
Czechs' trust in the EU and the European Parliament has seen a slow
but steady growth since 2016 when it was at its lowest since the
country’s admission to the EU in 2004, the STEM polling agency reported
According to the results of a June poll, trust in the EU in June was at 41 percent, up by 2 percent compared to the same month last year, and that in the European Parliament was up by 4 percent, reaching 34 percent.
Trust in EU institutions was at its highest at the start of the Czech EU presidency in 2009, when the EU was trusted by 60 percent and the EP by 51 percent of Czechs.
However it slid to a record low in 2016 declining to 29 and 24 percent, respectively, a phenomenon that was attributed, at least in part, to the migrant crisis.
STEM analysts say Czechs have been gradually feeling a stronger identity with Europe in the past few years. According to the latest poll some 71 percent of Czechs feel they are “Europeans”.
Efforts to keep spending down could mean that the Czech Republic does not
have enough officials to handle the country’s presidency of the European
Union in 2022, the Czech Radio news site iRozhlas.cz reported. Individual
ministries originally said they needed 600 new staff but the government
says it will not provide funding for any more than 200.
iRozhlas said neither the Ministry of Finance nor the government possessed methodology or an analysis with regard to how to calculate the number of hires necessary.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said in July that the proposed intake of staff should be adequate to handle the EU presidency. He said the government’s top priority was state budget austerity.
The Czech government on Monday approved the nomination of Věra Jourová to
serve a second term as a European Commissioner.
Jourová has served as European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality as a part of the Juncker Commission since October 2014.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš is hoping that she can secure an economic portfolio. Jourová said she is interested in digitization, the internal market, trade and transport.
She is due to meet the incoming EU Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, on Wednesday.
Věra Jourová, who currently handles justice, consumers and gender, is preparing to become the first Czech to serve two consecutive stints on the European Commission. Prime Minister Babiš is hoping that Mrs. Jourová can secure an economic portfolio, possibly with a view to securing political points at home.
The country’s ambassadors around the world should be proud of the Czech Republic and talk up its achievements. That was the message from Andrej Babiš to Czech diplomats currently gathered in Prague. The prime minister also emphasised the importance of the Visegrad Four and repeated his opposition to euro adoption in a broad-ranging speech.
The Czech Republic’s candidate for the post of the country’s European
commissioner, Věra Jourová, says she would be interested in securing the
digital agenda, internal market or trade portfolio. She made the comment to
members of the Czech lower house’s European Affairs Committee in Prague
Ms. Jourová is currently the European commissioner for justice, consumers and gender equality.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has said that his government will formally nominate her next Monday.
The committee for EU affairs in the Czech lower house will discuss the
nomination of Věra Jourová for another term as the Czech EU commissioner
on Tuesday, August 20, the ctk news agency reported.
The Czech prime minister, Andrej Babiš, already informed the incoming president of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen about the government’s choice and the lower house is expected to give its final stamp of approval.
Jourová’s nomination has won broad support both from the government and opposition parties. Prime Minister Babiš is hoping that her experience will increase the country’s chances of getting a more ambitious portfolio, such as the internal market or digitalization.