Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for competition. Teresa Czerwińska, Polish vice-president of the European Investment Bank (EIB). Nadia Calviño, Spanish minister of economy and finance. Daniele Franco, former Italian finance minister. Thomas Östros, Swedish vice-president of the EIB.
These are the five names on the list of “the candidates that have been assessed by the EIB Appointment Advisory Committee,” provided by the chairman of the EIB’s board of governors, Vincent Van Peteghem, to the other governors. In practical terms, these are the official candidates to succeed Werner Hoyer as president of the EIB after his departure at the end of 2023.
On the basis of this list, “I will conduct informal consultations with my colleagues of the EIB board of governors with a view to start the formal procedure to appoint a new president of the EIB in line with the EIB rules and procedures,” said Van Peteghem in his statement. The final decision will be taken “well in time before the current EIB president, Werner Hoyer, leaves office.”
A six-year mandate
The role of the appointment advisory committee, which is made up of five members from outside the EIB and appointed by the board of governors on a proposal from the EIB’s president, is to formulate “non-binding opinions” (non-objection or reservation) on the candidates received for the presidency of the institution. This is a necessary step before the president can be appointed for a (renewable) six-year term by the board of governors, acting by a qualified majority, on a proposal from the board of directors, also acting by a qualified majority.
As to whether the list of five candidates is “definitive,” Van Peteghem’s office has told Delano’s sister publication Paperjam that the list is “closed.”
In the meantime, according to the specialised European media outlets, two personalities are the favourites: Calviño, who headed up the European Commission’s budget and competition departments, and Vestager, known for her fight against the abuse of dominant positions by certain large companies, even if France did not appreciate her blocking of the Alstom-Siemens merger or her proposal of an American as chief economist of the European Commission’s competition directorate.
This article was first published in French on Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.