Juncker nominates his new European Commission: EU DP Regulation to be concluded by May 2015

Jean-Claude Juncker, the incoming President of the European Commission, nominated his team of commissioners on 10 September and set their data protection agenda.

Andrus Ansip, former Prime Minister of Estonia, who has been nominated as Vice-President for the Digital Single Market, is tasked with overseeing, during the first six months of the mandate, the conclusion of negotiations on the reform of Europe’s data protection rules as well as the review of the Safe Harbour arrangement with the US. This would involve the need to “break down national silos in… data protection legislation” and “working to fight cybercrime.” As the new Commission starts work in November, this would take us to end of April 2015.

Vice-Presidents will lead project teams, steering and coordinating the work of a number of Commissioners. They also decide who, in their area of responsibility, will represent the European Commission in the other European institutions.

The nominee for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Commissioner is Věra Jourová, Minister for Regional Development in the Czech Republic. Juncker, who is scheduled to take over as the president on 1 November, said in his mission letter to Jourová that one of her tasks will be to ‘Conclude negotiations on a comprehensive EU-US data protection agreement which provides justiciable rights for all EU citizens, regardless of where they reside, as well as reviewing the Safe Harbour arrangement.’

Günther H. Oettinger from Germany, currently EU Commissioner for Energy, will become Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society and responsible for ‘supporting the Vice-President for the Digital Single Market and the Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality in finalising the negotiations on an ambitious Data Protection Regulation in 2015.’ Depending on the outcome of these negotiations, the Commission also plans a reform of the EU e-Privacy Directive.

The next step is that the European Parliament has to give its consent to the entire College of Commissioners, after which the European Council is able to formally appoint the new Commission from 1 November.

Progress of the EU DP draft Regulation under Italy’s Presidency

PL&B will organise a UK Roundtable with the Chair of the DAPIX Committee for the Council of Ministers, ICO, UK Ministry of Justice and European Data Protection Supervisor in London on 11 December 2014. Learn about the latest stage of negotiations.