PES leaders: Frans Timmermans is the clear choice for Commission President

20/06/2019

Prime Ministers and leaders from the Party of European Socialists

Prime Ministers and leaders from the Party of European Socialists

Frans Timmermans is the best candidate for President of the European Commission, with the skills, experience and ideas needed to rejuvenate Europe, Prime Ministers and leaders from the Party of European Socialists said today.

The PES political family gathered in Brussels to discuss EU top jobs, and other items on the agenda of today’s crunch European Council meeting.

Progressive Prime Ministers Pedro Sánchez and António Costa briefed the PES summit on the status of negotiations for the EU top jobs, currently being held with representatives from other political families following last month’s European elections.

PES President Sergei Stanishev said:

“Frans Timmermans is the clear choice for Commission President. He is steadfastly pro-European, he has the necessary experience, and he has a vision for Europe. He is the candidate who can lead the European Commission and effectively address the challenges facing our continent - the changing nature of work, climate change, gender equality, and so much more. He is the natural choice to head up the Commission.”

PES leaders also expressed support for the swift opening of accession talks between the European Union, the Republic of North Macedonia and Albania, echoing the position of progressive Ministers of European Affairs earlier this week. The PES praises the efforts and the commitment of North Macedonia and Albania as they move along the path towards the accession process.

The meeting also denounced the attempts by Turkey to begin gas exploration in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone. Prime Ministers, Commissioners and leaders called on Turkey to uphold good neighbourly relations with surrounding states and to respect the territorial integrity of Cyprus.

PES President Sergei Stanishev welcomed Antti Rinne, who was sworn in as the new Prime Minister of Finland earlier this month, to the meeting. Within a few weeks the PES hopes to welcome another new Prime Minister, from Denmark, into the progressive political family. This will bring the number of Prime Ministers in the European Union from the PES family up to eight.

The meeting also welcomed Iratxe García Pérez - a dedicated campaigner for social justice, and a proud pro-European and feminist - to the meeting and congratulated her on becoming the new President of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats parliamentary group.

Photographs from the event are available on Flickr.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Sergei Stanishev, PES President
  • Frans Timmermans, PES Common Candidate, First Vice-President of the European Commission
  • António Costa, Prime Minister of Portugal
  • Stefan Lofven, Prime Minister of Sweden
  • Joseph Muscat, Prime Minister of Malta
  • Peter Pellegrini, Prime Minister of Slovakia
  • Antti Rinne, Prime Minister of Finland
  • Pedro Sanchez, Prime Minister of Spain
  • Olaf Scholz, Federal Minister of Finance and Vice Chancellor of Germany
  • Alexis Tsipras, Prime Minister of Greece (Observer)
  • Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
  • Pierre Moscovici, European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs
  • Maros Sefcovic, European Commissioner for Energy Union
  • Iratxe Garcia, President, Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament
  • Karl- Heinz Lambertz, President, Committee of the Regions
  • Achim Post, PES Secretary General
  • Lodewijk Asscher, PvdA Netherlands
  • Jean Asselborn, LSAP Luxembourg
  • Davor Bernardic, SDP Croatia
  • Elio Di Rupo, PS Belgium
  • Olivier Faure, PS France
  • Fofi Gennimata, PASOK Greece
  • Pamela Rendi-Wagner, SPÖ Austria
  • Indrek Saar, SDE Estonia
  • Dejan Zidan, SD Slovenia
  • Nicola Zingaretti, PD Italy