Tag Archives: Neelie Kroes

Commission Approval Vote Rescheduled?

The vote for approval of the whole college of commissioners will probably be postponed for 9 February. The new Bulgarian commissioner designate, Kristalina Georgieva, will likely be heard in the European Parliament on 3 February.

Meanwhile the second hearing on Neelie Kroes -commissioner-designate for the Digital Agenda, has gone well. This means that probably the only replacement will be the Bulgarian Georgieva, and the Barroso II team will be approved.

The former commissioner designate, Mrs. Jeleva, will step down from her position as Bulgarian minister of foreign affairs.

German Aid to Opel Was Not, Well, Conditional

On Friday Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes had written to the German Economy Minister, voicing doubts about Germany’s offer to provide 4.5 billion euros in financial aid for Opel as part of the deal with Canadian Magna and Russian Sberbank. As Euractiv points out, the German government said repeatedly it had a “clear preference” for the Magna bid as it offered Opel the most promising future and would protect German jobs.

Now Germany’s government has written a letter to GM and the Opel trust assuring them that the €4.5bn of government aid for the deal was not dependent on Magna and Sberbank being the winner, and was available to all bidders. Quite convincing.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung explains that arguments for the deal have nothing to do with Community competition law. But of course. Community competition law is a decoration we wear when the weather is appropriate.

Neelie Kroes in Blunt Warning over Car Jobs

The EU commissioner on competition was quite blunt in her message to Member States on aid for car manufacturers:

“We cannot accept one government bribing companies in order to steal or end the jobs of another.”

Her comments come after the German government plan for restructuring car manufacturer Opel that includes 3 billion Euros in loan guarantees.