This week, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has not only published the competences of the individual Commissioners but has also presented a completely new structure in which the Commission will work. Three new “Executive Vice-Presidents” will oversee the Commission’s priorities. „It’s great that there are two key Pirate portfolios under the responsibility of Executive Vice-Presidents. Digitization will be primarily given to Margrethe Vestager, a well-known warrior against the oligopoly of digital giants such as Google or Facebook. Vestager will also be in charge of free competition, which is perfectly matched with digitization. The European Green Deal will be in the portfolio of Frans Timmermans. It is a sign that the new Commission attaches crucial importance to these issues, which is undoubtedly good news,“ says MEP Markéta Gregorová.
Slight scepticism occurs when reading the specific agenda of individual Commissioners. „There are many potential frictions in the division of responsibilities. The question is, how do Executive Vice-Presidents and other Vice-Presidents divide the agenda. For example, digitization also appears in portfolios of Commissioners Sylvie Goulard and Maryi Gabriel. Ursula von der Leyen has promised everyone an interesting agenda in order to gain the support of the Parliament. However, the plan how concrete the work of the individual Commissioners will be divided between them is missing,“ says MEP Mikuláš Peksa.
„Another critical aspect is in which direction will each Commissioner push their agenda. We have to, and we will work on protecting fundamental rights and freedoms in an online environment in legislation related to Digital Single Market, such as the Digital Services Act,“ says MEP and Vice-President of the European Parliament Marcel Kolaja.