The Barroso Commission was the European Commission in office from 22 November 2004 until 31 October 2014. Its president was José Manuel Barroso. On 16 September 2009 Barroso was re-elected by the European Parliament for a further five years and his Commission was approved to take office on 9 February 2010. Barroso was at first seen as the lowest common denominator by outside commentators, but his proposed team of Commissioners earned him some respect before triggering a crisis when the European Parliament objected to some of them, forcing a reshuffle. In 2007 the Commission gained two new members when Bulgaria joined the European Union. Barroso's handling of his office was markedly more Presidential than his predecessors'. During his term the Commission passed major legislation including the REACH and'Bolkestein' Directives. Under Barroso, the civil service in the Commission became more economically liberal. Barroso was nominated as president and approved by Parliament in July 2004; however his proposed Commission met with opposition from the Parliament, notably concerning Rocco Buttiglione and his conservative comments which were seen as incompatible with his role as European Commissioner for Justice and Security.
The opposition plunged the EU into a minor crisis before Barroso conceded to the Parliament and reshuffled his team, removing Buttiglione, his Commission took office on 22 November 2004. The Commission was joined in 2007 by two further Commissioners when Bulgaria and Romania joined the EU; the Prodi Commission was due to end its mandate at the end of October 2004, so following the 2004 elections to the Sixth European Parliament, candidates for Commission President began to be considered. There was strong backing for Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt from Ireland and Germany who saw him as a "convinced European and a fighter"; however the federalist was opposed by Spain the United Kingdom and Poland due to his vocal opposition to both the Iraq War and the inclusion of God in the European Constitution. Irish Taoiseach Bertie Ahern was a popular candidate but did not wish to take up the job. Due to the victory of the European People's Party in the previous election, EPP parties were keen to get one of their members into the post, including Luxembourgian Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, who refused, Austrian Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel, in a coalition with the far-right Freedom Party of Austria which discredited him as a candidate to some governments.
A number of Commissioners were touted, notably Franz Fischler, Commissioner for Agriculture, António Vitorino, Commissioner for JHA, Chris Patten, Commissioner for External Relations, Michel Barnier, Commissioner for Regional Policy. Other candidates were High Representative Javier Solana and President of the Parliament Pat Cox however both were light candidates; however Barroso emerged as a leading candidate despite his support for the Iraq War and being seen as the lowest common denominator following objections to other candidates. The Parliament approved Barroso as president on 22 July 2004 by 413 votes to 215 with most of his support coming from the EPP-ED group, he did however earn praise for his choice of commissioners. Barroso rejected the idea of a "supercommissioner" and desired 1/3 of the Commission to be women and that the most powerful portfolios should be handed to those most capable, not those from larger states, his sharing out of jobs between the larger and smaller states earned him some early praise.
Candidates were proposed by national governments for each of the Commissioners and Parliament held hearings for them, to determine their suitability, between 27 September and 11 October of that year. During the hearings, members found fault in a number of Commissioners. Committees questioned the suitability of Ingrida Udre, László Kovács, Neelie Kroes and Mariann Fischer-Boel; however the most controversial was Rocco Buttiglione as European Commissioner for Justice and Security due to his conservative comments which, in the eyes of some MEPs, made him unsuitable for a job securing civil rights in the EU leading to the civil rights committee to be the first committee to vote down an incoming Commissioner. The Party of European Socialists were the most vocal critics of Barroso and his proposed Commission, while the European People's Party backed the Commission with the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe split. Barroso attempted to offer small concessions to Parliament but they were not accepted as the PES made clear they would vote down the Commission as it stood, leaving the divided ALDE holding the balance of whether the Barroso Commission would be the first Commission in EU history to rejected by Parliament.
The EPP demanded that if Buttiglione were to go a PES commissioner must be sacrificed for balance. Barroso gave in and withdrew his proposed college of Commissioners and, following three weeks which left Prodi continuing as a caretaker, proposed a new line-up. There were three changes to help his dented authority and win the support of Parliament: Buttiglione had been withdrawn by Italy and replaced by foreign minister Franco Frattini, László Kovács was moved from Energy to Taxation and Ingrida Udre was withdrawn and replaced by Andris Piebalgs who took over the now vacant post of Energy; however a further issue concerning Jacques Barrot was raised by Independence/Democracy
Treaty of Rome
The Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union is one of two treaties forming the constitutional basis of the European Union, the other being the Treaty on European Union. The Treaty of Rome brought about the creation of the European Economic Community, the best-known of the European Communities, it was signed on 25 March 1957 by Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands and West Germany and came into force on 1 January 1958. It remains one of the two most important treaties in the modern-day European Union; the TEEC proposed the progressive reduction of customs duties and the establishment of a customs union. It proposed to create a single market for goods, labour and capital across the EEC's member states, it proposed the creation of a Common Agriculture Policy, a Common Transport Policy and a European Social Fund, established the European Commission. The treaty's name has been retrospectively amended on several occasions since 1957; the Maastricht Treaty of 1992 removed the word "economic" from the Treaty of Rome's official title and, in 2009, the Treaty of Lisbon renamed it the "Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union".
The TFEU originated as the treaty establishing the European Economic Community, signed in Rome on 25 March 1957. On 7 February 1992, the Maastricht treaty, which led to the formation of the European Union, saw the EEC Treaty renamed as the Treaty establishing the European Community and renumbered; the Maastricht reforms saw the creation of the European Union's three pillar structure, of which the European Community was the major constituent part. Following the 2005 referenda, which saw the failed attempt at launching a European Constitution, on 13 December 2007 the Lisbon treaty was signed; this saw the'TEC' renamed as the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and, once again, renumbered. The Lisbon reforms resulted in the merging of the three pillars into the reformed European Union. In 1951, the Treaty of Paris was signed, creating Steel Community; the Treaty of Paris was an international treaty based on international law, designed to help reconstruct the economies of the European continent, prevent war in Europe and ensure a lasting peace.
The original idea was conceived by Jean Monnet, a senior French civil servant and it was announced by Robert Schuman, the French Foreign Minister, in a declaration on 9 May 1950. The aim was to pool Franco-West German coal and steel production, because the two raw materials were the basis of the industry and power of the two countries; the proposed plan was that Franco-West German coal and steel production would be placed under a common High Authority within the framework of an organisation that would be open for participation to other European countries. The underlying political objective of the European Coal and Steel Community was to strengthen Franco-German cooperation and banish the possibility of war. France, West Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands began negotiating the treaty; the Treaty Establishing the ECSC was signed in Paris on 18 April 1951, entered into force on 24 July 1952. The Treaty expired on 23 July 2002, after fifty years; the common market opened on 10 February 1953 for coal, iron ore and scrap, on 1 May 1953 for steel.
In the aim of creating a United States of Europe, two further Communities were proposed, again by the French. A European Defence Community and a European Political Community. While the treaty for the latter was being drawn up by the Common Assembly, the ECSC parliamentary chamber, the EDC was rejected by the French Parliament. President Jean Monnet, a leading figure behind the Communities, resigned from the High Authority in protest and began work on alternative Communities, based on economic integration rather than political integration; as a result of the energy crises, the Common Assembly proposed extending the powers of the ECSC to cover other sources of energy. However, Monnet desired a separate Community to cover nuclear power, Louis Armand was put in charge of a study into the prospects of nuclear energy use in Europe; the report concluded that further nuclear development was needed, in order to fill the deficit left by the exhaustion of coal deposits and to reduce dependence on oil producers.
The Benelux states and West Germany were keen on creating a general common market. In the end, Monnet proposed creating both as separate Communities to attempt to satisfy all interests; as a result of the Messina Conference of 1955, Paul-Henri Spaak was appointed as chairman of a preparatory committee, the Spaak Committee, charged with the preparation of a report on the creation of a common European market. The Spaak Report drawn up by the Spaak Committee provided the basis for further progress and was accepted at the Venice Conference where the decision was taken to organise an Intergovernmental Conference; the report formed the cornerstone of the Intergovernmental Conference on the Common Market and Euratom at Val Duchesse in 1956. The outcome of the conference was that the new Communities would share the Common Assembly with the ECSC, as they would the European Court of Justice. However, they would not share the ECSC's Council of High Authority; the two new High Authorities would be called Commissions, from a reduction in their powers.
France was reluctant to agree to more supranational powers.
The Rey Commission is the European Commission that held office from 2 July 1967 to 30 June 1970. Its president was Jean Rey, it was the first commission of the merged European Communities. It was succeeded by the Malfatti Commission; the commission worked to reinforce the Communities' institutions and increase the powers of the European Parliament. It campaigned for an elected parliament, achieved in 1979, it oversaw the competition of the customs union in 1968. Rey played an important role the Summit of The Hague in 1969, where the European leaders decided to relaunch European integration with two new initiatives: on the one hand and Monetary Union of the European Union, on the other hand, European Political Cooperation, which foreshadow the euro and the Common Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union today. In 1970, the last year of this mandate, Rey managed to win the European governments' support for his proposal to give the Community "own resources"; this meant that the EEC no longer depended on contributions by the member states, but could complete these with revenues from customs duties, levies on agricultural products from outside the EEC, in addition to a share of the VAT revenue.
The commission was composed of 14 members, 3 from Italy, West Germany, France, 2 from Belgium and the Netherlands and 1 from Luxembourg. The colour of the row indicates the approximate political leaning of the office holder using the following scheme: European Commission Website PDF Archive of Commission Membership PDF Analysis of Political Experience of Commission Membership by UK politician Tom King and the Centre for Policy Studies NATIONAL BANK OF BELGIUM, August 2004 Working Paper on Macroeconomic and Monetary policy-making at the European Commission 1957 to 1969
The Prodi Commission was the European Commission in office between 1999 and 2004. The administration was led by former Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi; the commission took office on 13 September 1999 following the scandal and subsequent resignation of the Santer Commission which had damaged the reputation of the institution. The College consisted of 20 Commissioners which grew to 30 following the Enlargement of the European Union in 2004, it was the last commission to see two members allocated to the larger member states. This commission saw in increase in influence following Amsterdam Treaty; some in the media described president Prodi as being the first "Prime Minister of the European Union". As well as the enlargement and Amsterdam Treaty, the Prodi Commission saw the signing and enforcement of the Nice Treaty as well as the conclusion and signing of the European Constitution: in which he introduced the "Convention method" of negotiation. From 1999 Prodi saw in the euro and by 2002 it came into cash form and the single currency for 12 of the EU's 15 member states.
The body was however criticised for being lacklustre, with poor communication and failing to make an impact despite major events such as enlargement and the euro. The commission was due to leave office on 31 October 2004, but due to opposition from the European parliament to the proposed Barroso Commission which would succeed it, it was extended and left office on 21 November 2004; when the Commission took office in 1999, there were 20 Commissioners, one from each member state and two from the largest 5 states. 2004 saw 15 new Commissioners, 5 replacing existing Commissioners who had resigned before the end of their mandate and 10 from the new member states who joined in that year. Most of these Commissioners continued to serve in the following Barroso Commission; the members from the new states shared a portfolio with an existing member, rather than creating new posts or having Commissioners without a portfolio. The following table indicates the number of Commissioners according to their political alignment at the start of the Commission, those who joined from the new member states and the number when the Commission left office.
The colours reflect. Bolkestein Directive Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe President Prodi's Website Prodi Commission profiles and homepages
Jenkins Commission (EU)
The Jenkins Commission was the European Commission that held office from 6 January 1977 to 6 January 1981. Its President was Roy Jenkins, it was succeeded by the Thorn Commission. Despite stagnating growth and a higher energy bill, the Jenkins Commission oversaw the development of the Economic and Monetary Union of the European Union from 1977, which began in 1979 as the European Monetary System, a forerunner of the Single Currency or euro. President Jenkins was the first President to attend a G8 summit on behalf of the Community; the colour of the row indicates the approximate political leaning of the office holder using the following scheme: European commission website PDF Archive of Commission Membership PDF Analysis of Political Experience of Commission Membership by UK politician Tom King and the Centre for Policy Studies
The Juncker Commission is the European Commission in office since 1 November 2014 and is due to serve until 2019. Its president is Jean-Claude Juncker. In July 2014, Juncker was elected to succeed José Manuel Barroso, who completed his second five-year term in that year. In the 2014 parliamentary election, Juncker campaigned as the candidate of the European People's Party for the presidency of the European Commission; the EPP won a plurality in parliament, on 27 June, the European Council nominated him for the post. On 15 July 2014, the European Parliament elected Juncker as the new Commission president. On 22 October, the European Parliament approved the Juncker Commission in its entirety and during the 23–24 October 2014 meeting of the European Council the Council formally appointed the new Commission. On 1 November 2014, the new Commission assumed office. Juncker has outlined a ten-point agenda for his Presidency focusing on jobs and growth; the following college of commissioners serves under Juncker's presidency: Parties European People's Party Party of European Socialists Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe None The President's cabinet supports the President of the commission, thus has a central role in coordinating the work of the European Commission as a whole.
The president's cabinet is led by Clara Martinez Alberola. It was led by Martin Selmayr, described as "the most powerful EU chief of staff ever." Juncker has for the first time proposed a commission that clusters certain members together under designated policy areas. These clusters will each be headed by one of the vice presidents; each team is composed of a core membership in addition to members who may fall under its respective umbrella as needed. Timmermans and Georgieva both oversee all commissioners while the remaining five project teams are as follows: Vice President: Andrus Ansip Elżbieta Bieńkowska Corina Crețu Phil Hogan Věra Jourová Pierre Moscovici Günther Oettinger Marianne Thyssen Vytenis Andriukaitis Jonathan Hill/Valdis Dombrovskis Carlos Moedas Tibor Navracsics Margrethe Vestager Vice President: Valdis Dombrovskis Elżbieta Bieńkowska Corina Crețu Věra Jourová Jonathan Hill/Valdis Dombrovskis Pierre Moscovici Tibor Navracsics Marianne Thyssen Vice President: Jyrki Katainen Elżbieta Bieńkowska Miguel Arias Cañete Corina Crețu Jonathan Hill/Valdis Dombrovskis Pierre Moscovici Günther Oettinger Violeta Bulc Marianne Thyssen Vytenis Andriukaitis Dimitris Avramopoulos Johannes Hahn Phil Hogan Věra Jourová Cecilia Malmström Carlos Moedas Tibor Navracsics Karmenu Vella Margrethe Vestager Vice President: Maroš Šefčovič Elżbieta Bieńkowska Miguel Arias Cañete Corina Crețu Phil Hogan Karmenu Vella Carlos Moedas Violeta Bulc Věra Jourová Cecilia Malmström Günther Oettinger Pierre Moscovici Marianne Thyssen Margrethe Vestager Vice President: Federica Mogherini Johannes Hahn Cecilia Malmström Neven Mimica Christos Stylianides Dimitris Avramopoulos Miguel Arias Cañete Violeta Bulc In 2015, when European migrant crisis unfolded, new project team was formed.
First Vice President: Frans Timmermans Federica Mogherini Dimitris Avramopoulos Johannes Hahn Nev
Western Union (alliance)
The Western Union referred to as the Brussels Treaty Organisation, was the European military alliance established between France, the United Kingdom and the three Benelux countries in September 1948 in order to implement the Treaty of Brussels signed in March the same year. Under this treaty the signatories, referred to as the five powers, agreed to collaborate in the defence ﬁeld as well as in the political and cultural ﬁelds. During the Korean War, the headquarters and plans of the WU's defence arm, the Western Union Defence Organisation, were transferred to the newly established North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, providing the nucleus of NATO's command structure at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe; as a consequence of the failure of the European Defence Community in 1954, the London and Paris Conferences led to the Modified Treaty of Brussels through which the Western Union was transformed into the Western European Union and was joined by Italy and West Germany. As the WEU's functions were transferred to the European Union's European Security and Defence Policy at the turn of the 21st century, the Western Union is a precursor of both NATO and the military arm of the EU.
In the aftermath of World War II there were fears of a renewal of German aggression, on 4 March 1947 the Treaty of Dunkirk was signed by France and the United Kingdom as a Treaty of Alliance and Mutual Assistance in the event of a possible attack. In his speech to the House of Commons on 22 January 1948, British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin called for the extension of the Treaty of Dunkirk to conclude the Benelux countries, creating a Western Union; the object was to consolidate Western Europe to satisfy the United States and to give advance notice of the eventual incorporation of Italy, Germany, into the Treaty. The negotiating conference was held on a few days after the coup in Prague; the Western Union was intended to provide Western Europe with a bulwark against the communist threat and to bring greater collective security. The Treaty of Brussels was signed on 17 March 1948 between Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, was an expansion to the preceding year's defence pledge, the Dunkirk Treaty signed between Britain and France.
Although the Treaty goes no further than providing for'cooperation' between the contracting parties,'which will be effected through the Consultative Council referred to in Article VII as well as through other bodies', in practice the arrangement was referred to as Western Union or the Brussels Treaty Organisation. When the division of Europe into two opposing camps became considered unavoidable, the threat of the USSR became much more important than the threat of German rearmament. Western Europe, sought a new mutual defence pact involving the United States, a powerful military force for such an alliance; the United States, concerned with containing the influence of the USSR, was responsive. Secret meetings began by the end of March 1949 between American and British officials to initiate the negotiations that led to the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty on 4 April 1949 in Washington, DC; the need to back up the commitments of the North Atlantic Treaty with appropriate political and military structures led to the creation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.
In December 1950, with the appointment of General Eisenhower as the first Supreme Allied Commander Europe, the members of the Treaty of Brussels decided to transfer the headquarters and plans of the Western Union Military Organisation to NATO. NATO's Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe took over responsibility for the defence of Western Europe, while the physical headquarters in Fontainebleau were transformed into NATO's Headquarters, Allied Forces Central Europe; as WUDO's capacities were transferred to NATO's SHAPE, Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery resigned as Commanders-in-Chief Committee Chairman on 31 March 1951 and took the position of deputy SACEUR Supreme Allied Commander Europe on 1 April 1951. The establishment of NATO, along with the signing of a succession of treaties establishing the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, the Council of Europe and the European Coal and Steel Community, left the Western Union and its founding Treaty of Brussels was left devoid of much of its authority.
The Western Union's founding Treaty of Brussels was amended at the 1954 Paris Conference as a result of the failure of the Treaty establishing the European Defence Community to gain French ratification: The General Treaty of 1952 formally named the EDC as a prerequisite of the end of Allied occupation of Germany, there was a desire to include Germany in the Western defence architecture. The Modified Brussels Treaty transformed the Western Union into the Western European Union, at which point Italy and Germany were admitted. Although the WEU established by the Modified Brussels Treaty was less powerful and ambitious than the original Western Union, German membership of the WEU was considered sufficient for the occupation of the country to end in accordance with the General Treaty. Social and cultural aspects were handed to the Council of Europe to avoid duplication of responsibilities within Europe; the Treat