European Commission reshuffle could see Transport and Energy portfolios change nominees
Alenka Bratušek was the only nominee to fail to convince the European Parliament Committees. Her replacement nominee who joined the Slovenian government of Prime Minister Miro Cerar one month ago, is seen as too junior to get a Vice Presidency of the European Commission. Šefčovič is currently Vice President of the European Commission in charge of inter-institutional relations and administration and has been nominated for the more senior position.
Hearing at European Parliament's Transport Committee on 20 October
The new Slovenian candidate Violeta Bulc will be auditioned by the Transport Committee in the European Parliament on Monday in Strasburg whereas Šefčovič will go in front of the relevant Committee on the Tuesday. The Parliament, who can only vote to endorse or reject the entire proposal for the composition of the Commission and the portfolio allocations, is due to vote in plenary on the Junker Commission on the Wednesday 22nd of October.
The Transport Committee members in the European Parliament wrote a letter to the European Commission President asking them to keep Šefčovič as the Transport Commissioner-designate, following the rumours that he would be given the Energy Union Vice Presidency. The Committee was very satisfied with the hearing of Šefčovič on the 30th of September.
New candidate: Violeta Bulc
Violeta Bulc, the new Slovenian nominee, is a 50-year-old telecoms entrepreneur who studied in San Francisco and worked in Silicon Valley before returning to Slovenia to work in the state telecoms company. She then founded her own telecoms firm. Last month she was included in the government by newly elected Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar, who unseated Alenka Bratušek, the former PM who had nominated herself as the European Commission candidate, in an election in July.