Juncker to head euro zone for a new term


Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker looks set to be re-elected next month as chairman of eurozone finance ministers for a term of two-and-a-half years, officials said on Tuesday (1 December). 

Juncker presides over meetings of the Eurogroup – a monthly session of finance ministers from the 16 euro area countries and the European Commission in which European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet also takes part. 

“We all agreed that in January the Eurogroup president [chairman] will be elected for two-and-a-half years,” Juncker told a news conference after a meeting of the ministers. 

The issue of Eurogroup chairmanship has come up because of the entry into force of the European Union’s Lisbon reform treaty on 1 December. 

Under the treaty, the Eurogroup chairman is to be elected for two-and-a-half years rather than two years as before. 

“There is absolutely no doubt that he will be elected president of the Eurogroup for the next two and a half years,” German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble told reporters before the meeting, referring to Juncker. 

The finance ministers also will choose a new vice-president for the European Central Bank in January, with a mid-December deadline for candidates to come forward, the head of the Eurogroup said.

Juncker said the 16 ministers would select a successor to Lucas Papademos, whose term expires in 2010, at the start of next year and their choice would be endorsed by state leaders at a meeting in March.

“We have discussed that issue,” Juncker told journalists.

“We will as the Eurogroup try to take a decision in January allowing us to enable the European Council to decide upon this matter during its March session,” he said. 

(EURACTIV with Reuters.)

Further Reading

Subscribe to our newsletters


Want to know what's going on in the EU Capitals daily? Click here!