Pirates with STAN To Propose Next Czech EU Commissioner, Says Richterova
Pirates and STAN will both have the right to nominate candidates, who will then be considered by the government. Credit: Freepik.
Prague, Sept 25 (CTK) – The junior coalition Pirates and Mayors and Independents (STAN) are to nominate the next Czech EU commissioner, Chamber of Deputies Deputy Speaker Olga Richterova (Pirates) said in a debate on CNN Prima News TV yesterday, adding that PM Petr Fiala (ODS) had clearly approved this deal.
MEP and ODS deputy chairman Alexandr Vondra agreed with Richterova, but stressed it was no “blank check”.
Pravo reported this week that STAN believed they were to propose the European Commissioner alone, on the basis of agreements made during the formation of the cabinet. The Pirates, however, said they agreed that they should nominate a representative to the European Commission (EC) together.
“Prime Minister Petr Fiala has clearly confirmed that this is about the nomination by the election coalition of the Pirates and STAN,” Richterova said. The two entities ran together in the general elections two years ago, known as the PirSTAN electoral alliance.
The Pirates also launched the selection of a candidate for the European Commission on their online forum last week. Proposals can be submitted by 1 October, and the nominees will have two weeks to consider their nomination, after which a two-round election will take place. Any member or registered supporter of the Pirate Party can contest the post.
Vondra noted that based on his information from the prime minister, both parties, Pirates and STAN, will have the right to nominate a candidate. The nomination will then be considered by the government.
According to Vondra, it is crucial for the Czech Republic to obtain a strong portfolio in the EC, which would be for the first time. The portfolio should be in line with Czech interests and related to the economy, energy or diplomacy, for example, he said.
It will become clear after the European Parliament elections next June who will replace Czech Commissioner Vera Jourova in the EU executive.
Jourova has represented the Czech Republic in the EC since 2014 and is now a vice-president in Ursula von der Leyen’s commission. Jourova is the EU Commissioner for Values and Transparency, but is now also in charge of managing and coordinating the Europe Fit for the Digital Age programme, part of the portfolio left by European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager, who has taken unpaid leave to run for the presidency of the European Investment Bank (EIB).
The past Czech EU commissioners were Pavel Telicka, Vladimir Spidla and Stefan Fule.