EU leaders deadlocked over top 2 EU jobs

EU leaders deadlocked over top 2 EU jobs

The European Union's 27 leaders were facing an all-nighter Thursday as a bruising battle loomed over who to name as the bloc's first full-time president and new foreign policy chief, AP reported.

Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, chair of the EU summit, said despite his best efforts at mediation the EU leaders were deadlocked ahead of the dinner that will decide the issue Thursday night.

Reinfeldt told reporters in Stockholm that "it might take all night" to get all the leaders to agree on two names, and added that the list of candidates he has drafted is far too long.

"We are not of the same opinion," said Reinfeldt. "I need of course the collaboration of all my colleagues to get this through."

Time is pressing for the leaders, as the new posts must be filled before the EU's new reform treaty comes into force on Dec. 1.

At stake is how the European Union presents itself to the world in years to come. The two posts aim to bolster the bloc's influence amid the rise of China, Brazil and India to handle global issues like climate change, terrorism and trade.

The leaders are trying to strike the right balance between big countries and small, rich and poor, east and west, socialists and conservatives, male and female. Lawmakers and protesters have already questioned why only one woman is being considered so far.

Belgium's little-known Premier Herman Van Rompuy leads the pack of half a dozen mentioned politicians said to be interested in the presidential post, which is being created under the new EU charter.

Britain however, opposes Van Rompuy and is pushing hard for ex-prime minister Tony Blair to get the job, saying Europe needs a high-profile EU president.

Others like France and Spain, fearing Blair would overshadow them, favor a low-profile person in the top EU post, one limited to chairing summits and greeting foreign dignitaries.

"The person should be a co-ordinator rather than a president," said Jerzy Buzek, speaker of the European Parliament.

Smaller EU nations loathe the idea of being led by Blair, whose strong support for the Iraq war angered many Europeans. They also want a president from a country that uses the EU's common euro currency and participates in its passport-free travel zone. Britain has opted out of those EU projects.

Other possibilities for president include Dutch Prime Minister Jan-Peter Balkenende, Luxembourg Premier Jean-Claude Juncker, Estonian President Toomas Ilves, and Vaira Vike-Freiberga, the former Latvian president and the only female candidate touted.

No candidates so far are from France or Germany, the traditional motors of the EU.

The EU reform treaty does not spell out what the EU president's job really is. The original idea was that a European president would give the EU a bigger profile on the world stage, one commensurate with its economic heft.

But that appears to have changed. Power seems to have shifted to the EU's new foreign minister, who will get a say over the bloc's annual euro7 billion ($10.5 billion) foreign aid budget and a new 5,000-strong EU diplomatic corps.

The EU has a long history of horse-trading for plum jobs. In 1994, leaders took 12 hours and a veto by Britain to pick an European Commission president. In 1998, it took another 12 hours to choose the first European Central Bank chief - and the EU ended up having two people split the term.

Georgia publishes budget performance report of 1Q2021
Georgia publishes budget performance report of 1Q2021
EIB financing helped to launch 60 satellites into space in 2020
EIB financing helped to launch 60 satellites into space in 2020
EIB likely to support dev’t of renewable energy sphere in Azerbaijan
EIB likely to support dev’t of renewable energy sphere in Azerbaijan
Loading Bars
Latest
Building of Azerbaijan’s Mud Volcanoes Tourism Complex to look like crater from above
Strengthening confidence-building measures in Azerbaijan-Armenia relations most important - Russian MFA
Georgia publishes budget performance report of 1Q2021
French lawyers arrive in Azerbaijan’s Ganja city, shelled by Armenia during war (PHOTO)
EIB financing helped to launch 60 satellites into space in 2020
EIB likely to support dev’t of renewable energy sphere in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens for Apr. 22
Azerbaijan confirms 2,047 more COVID-19 cases, 2,610 recoveries
Baku entitled to demand compensation from Armenia – Russian political analyst
IATA revises 2021 forecasts of world airlines losses
Azerbaijan to open tourism bureau in Israel
Belarus to supply components for Azerbaijan to assemble tractors in 2021
Several more Russian airlines allowed to operate flights to Baku
EIB exploring new project ideas to support digitalization across Eastern Partnership
SOCAR won't participate in sales of Antipinski Refinery’s property
NCOC talks Marine Access Channels Project plans at Kazakh Kashagan field
Azerbaijan's Aghdam in complete ruins - French lawyer
Uzbekistan’s Central Bank notes decrease of inflation rate
EAG working on assessing Turkmenistan's compliance with FATF recommendations
Uzbekistan GTL to buy pipes via tender
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil to pay out dividends for 2020
Economy Ministry shares data on revenues from Azerbaijan's non-oil and gas sector
Turkmenistan elected member of Executive Board of UN Entity for Gender Equality, Empowerment of Women
Historical monuments in Azerbaijan's Aghdam vandalized - French criminal justice attorney
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil decreases oil transshipment volumes in 1Q2021
Turkmenistan increases processing of agricultural products
Turkmen company exports tomatoes to Austria
Autoclave gas blocks plant construction launched in Kazakhstan's Turkestan
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan launches new communication facilities in 1Q2021
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan sees decrease in insurance portfolio for 1Q2021
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price again falling
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan State Statistical Committee shares data on reconstruction of roads
Equinor to electrify over 35% of its total oil & gas output base by 2025
Russia leads among countries exporting goods to Azerbaijan
Iran’s CBI allocates funds for import of essential products
Output from Georgian Enguri HPP to increase after reconstruction - Director of Enguri HPP
Azerbaijan shares footage from Jabrayil's Shahverdili village (VIDEO)
Tesla opens Tel Aviv pop-up store
Russian airline receives permission to operate flights to Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan’s 3M2021 retail trade turnover of small business decreases
Number of bank accounts increases in Azerbaijan’s Nakhchivan
American Airlines loss narrows as travel demand picks up
Azerbaijan jointly with Russia sets up car manufacturing enterprise
Number of innovative companies worldwide grows
Kazakhstan boosts production of coal, some petroleum products
Swiss president heads for damage-control EU summit
Etihad Airways to stop operating Boeing 777-300ER jets this year
Installation of info boards on roads leading to Azerbaijan's liberated lands continues (VIDEO)
French human rights activists visiting Azerbaijan's Aghdam (PHOTO)
Georgia increases imports of tomatoes from Azerbaijan
Israeli airline to organize charter flights to Uzbekistan’s Tashkent
Kazakh president points out need to timely oversee major oil projects
US must choose between real ally Ankara and fictional history - Turkish presidential administration
Kazakhstan's trade with Italy down
Uzbekistan boosts import of electric cars
Azerbaijan names winner of auction for right to develop clay field in Goygol
Azerbaijan implementing "Smart Grid" concept in Sugovushan settlement (VIDEO)
Кazakh Electricity Grid Operating Company to buy spares via tender
Uzbekistan exports dried fruits to Malaysia through Turkey
Area of agricultural land in Iran equipped with modern irrigation systems growing
ADB introducing blockchain-based food tracking project in Azerbaijan
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for April 22
Azerbaijan publishes 1Q2021 data on lending to economy
Azerbaijan clears Sugovushan, Talyshkend from mines for construction of power transmission lines (PHOTO)
Several facilities put into operation in Iran's agricultural sector
Azerbaijani president, first lady attend ceremony of laying foundation of Mud Volcanoes Tourism Complex (PHOTO)
Georgia exports ignificant number of tractors, trucks to Azerbaijan
International revenue of Halliburton up amid increased software sales
Iran launches implementation of project on Cheshmeh Khosh oil field
Halliburton sees decrease in operating income
Azerbaijani banks' demand for foreign currency exponentially up
Turkmenistan increases production of vegetables, berries
Uzbek-Korean JV announces tender for consumables
Earth Day 2021: An unprecedented opportunity to restore our Earth
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan launches work on industrial projects in 1Q2021
Georgia reports 1,226 new cases of coronavirus for April 22
Turkey says France boosts import of domestic cars
Armenia commits provocations on state border with Azerbaijan
UAE's Universal Tubes and India's Tata in world's first blockchain-led trade finance for steel
Cargo transportation at Turkey's Adana airport reduces
Georgian wine exports to Azerbaijan see growth
Uzbekistan’s passenger cars production down in 1Q2021
Value of Turkey's grains, legumes export to Uzbekistan spikes in Mar.2021
Armenia planted plastic mines in liberated Sugovushan village - Azerbaijan's Mine Action Agency (VIDEO)
Russian GDP growth outlook downgraded to 2.9% for 2021
Inflation rate in Iran increases
Renault revenue falls for fifth quarter in a row
Turkey's 1Q2021 chemicals exports to Russia increase
Azerbaijani ministry appoints acting general director of Aztelekom LLC
Karabakh agreement - very important step in protection of human rights - German MFA
Georgian beer exports to Azerbaijan up
Turkmen carpet-making enterprise publishes production data for 1Q2021
ADB initiating program to support SMEs in Uzbekistan
Iran supplies agricultural machinery to farmers
Interconnections to increase Bulgaria’s gas market capacity by 10 bcm
Volume of loaded, unloaded cargo in Iranian ports decreases
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan raises agricultural production y-o-y
Spanish CAF eyes establishing co-op with Uzbekistan in railway transport
UAE working on increasing export of fresh agricultural products from Uzbekistan
Construction of int'l airport in Azerbaijan's Fuzuli accelerating (VIDEO)
All news