Headlines July 2013
After a busy seven months and the completion of several important administrative dossiers, the summer holidays will be an opportunity for rest and reflection before an equally busy autumn and the long run-up to the 2014 European elections.
Vice-Presidents Maroš Šefčovič and Antonio Tajani visited Slovakia on 9 July to see how the country is supporting key industries such as the automotive and steel sectors, as well as the tourism sector. They met with Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico and representatives from the industries concerned, as well as visiting a number of production facilities around the country.
Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič welcomed the start of the Lithuanian presidency of the EU with a visit to Vilnius on 7-8 July for meetings with parliamentarians.
Speaking to members of the European affairs committee of the Seimas on 7 July, V-P Šefčovič praised Lithuania for its resolve and resilience during the euro crisis, praising the country's reforms that have brought real results and set the country on track to potentially join the euro in 2015.
Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič welcomed the election of Emily O’Reilly as the new EU Ombudsman on July 3 following a vote in the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Ms O’Reilly is the first woman to hold the post, as she was also when appointed as Ireland’s national ombudsman in 2003. V-P Šefčovič stressed that the Commission would be the chief partner for the new ombudsman, and that together they would try to find the most comprehensive and effective solutions to issues raised by citizens, showing the people of Europe that the institutions really do care about their interests.
After a six-month stint in charge that ended in particular with an agreement on the long-term EU budget, the Irish Presidency of the EU came to an end with a debate in the European Parliament on July 2.