BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Russian Polish Albanian Greek Czech Ukrainian Serbian Turkish Romanian
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Europe  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 18 June, 2002, 15:30 GMT 16:30 UK
Prodi plans EU inner cabinet
Commission President Romano Prodi
Mr Prodi says change is necessary to prevent paralysis

The president of the European Commission, Romano Prodi, has unveiled plans for a new inner cabinet to be the driving force in the EU's administration.


Each new state wants its own commissioner... A commissioner is the symbol of the link between the union and member states

Romano Prodi
And in a warning to the EU's bigger countries, Mr Prodi said there could be no guarantee that any individual state would be represented on the Commission's top team.

He said his plans were intended to prevent policy-making paralysis as the EU expands eastwards to include up to 25 member states, possibly as soon as 2004.

The current system, where larger states have two commissioners each, was unsustainable, he said. In future, each country would have just one.

Super-departments

Controversially, Mr Prodi proposed that only a handful would join an inner cabinet, reporting to him directly.


Within the Commission there will be no directorate run by the big member states

Romano Prodi
These vice-presidents would be in charge of new super-departments run by groups of less senior commissioners.

He made clear he was determined to protect the future commission from national interference.

Commissioners would be assigned roles on the basis of their personal qualities and not their passports.

He insisted there could be no diktat from any individual country.

Streamlining

Mr Prodi said his ideas were still in the early stages, with no decision yet on how many commission vice-presidents would be appointed.

Member states have already agreed on the need to streamline the commission, but it's the administration structure which is likely to prove most contentious.

Critics in countries such as Britain and France are likely to see the plans as a further attempt to erode their national influence.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Spokesman for Mr Prodi
"We will have one commissioner per country"
See also:

22 May 02 | Europe
22 May 02 | Business
13 Dec 01 | Europe
30 Nov 01 | Europe
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes