EU Approves New Commission

John W. Miller, Wall Street Journal, 10.02.2010

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The European Union's parliament Tuesday ratified the appointment of a new slate of leaders for the European Commission, the EU's executive office of 20,000 elite civil servants.

The 26 commissioners, appointed by president Jose Manuel Barroso, were approved by a vote of 488 to 137, with 72 abstentions. The European Court of Justice in Luxembourg will swear in the new commission for a five-year term on Wednesday. [...]

The challenge, say officials and analysts, will be overcoming political unwillingness in EU countries. Mr. Barroso "will need to provide a coherent approach to things," says Janis Emmanouilidis, an analyst at the Brussels-based European Policy Centre. Offering a forceful response to globalization "is the only way" for the EU "to avoid gradual marginalization," he says.

Mr. Barroso told the European Parliament Tuesday that "stronger economic coordination is the only way forward" to overcome the financial crisis. He promised to "build a competitive and sustainable economy, tackle climate change and modernize the EU's industrial base."

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