Europe:  New Commission, new reform agenda

Europe: New Commission, new reform agenda

On July 16th, the new European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, was confirmed by the European Parliament by a narrow majority of MPs (383 votes, just over the minimum of 374 required). She will replace the incumbent Jean-Claude Juncker on November 1st. Her job will not be easy as for the first time in 40 years, a Grand coalition - spanning the European People's Party (EPP), the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and Renaissance (ALDE & R) - will govern. The strength of the Greens (almost 10% of seats) suggests they will be the swing force. We expect the newly formed Commission to focus on purchasing power and social policy, security, defense and climate change over the next five years. This three-party agenda could also be supported by non-traditional parties. On the other hand, business-friendly reforms, and bolder, yet dividing, policy blocks for Europe, do not appear to be on top of the list. Check our clusters of priorities for the next Commission in our report.