Jean-Claude Juncker

Jean-Claude Juncker (Luxembourgish: [ʒɑ̃ːkloːt ˈjuŋkɐ]; born 9 December 1954) is a Luxembourgish politician serving as President of the European Commission since 2014. From 1995 to 2013 he served as the 23rd Prime Minister of Luxembourg; from 1989 to 2009 he was also Minister for Finances.

By the time he left office, he was the longest-serving head of any national government in the EU, and one of the longest-serving democratically elected leaders in the world, his tenure encompassing the height of the European financial and sovereign debt crisis.[1] From 2005 to 2013, Juncker served as the first permanent President of the Eurogroup.

In 2014, the European People's Party (EPP) had Juncker as its lead candidate, or Spitzenkandidat, for the Presidency of the Commission in the 2014 elections. This marked the first time that the Spitzenkandidat process was employed.[2] Juncker is the first President that prior to the election has campaigned as a candidate for the position, a process introduced with the Treaty of Lisbon. The EPP won 220 out of 751 seats in the Parliament. On 27 June 2014, the European Council officially nominated Juncker for the position,[3][4][5] and on 15 July 2014, the European Parliament elected him with a majority of 422 votes from a total of 729 cast.[6] He succeeded José Manuel Barroso as President on 1 November 2014.[7] Juncker stated that his priorities would be the creation of a digital single market, the development of an EU Energy Union, the negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade Agreement, the continued reform of the Economic and Monetary Union of the European Union—with the social dimension in mind—and a "targeted fiscal capacity" for the Eurozone, as well as to negotiate a new deal with Britain.[8]

Jean-Claude Juncker
Ioannes Claudius Juncker die 7 Martis 2014
President of the European Commission
Assumed office
1 November 2014
Vice PresidentFrans Timmermans
Preceded byJosé Manuel Barroso
Prime Minister of Luxembourg
In office
20 January 1995 – 4 December 2013
MonarchJean
Henri
DeputyJacques Poos
Lydie Polfer
Jean Asselborn
Preceded byJacques Santer
Succeeded byXavier Bettel
Minister for the Treasury
In office
23 July 2009 – 4 December 2013
Prime MinisterHimself
Preceded byLuc Frieden
Succeeded byVacant
Minister for Finances
In office
14 July 1989 – 23 July 2009
Prime MinisterJacques Santer
Himself
Preceded byJacques Santer
Succeeded byLuc Frieden
Minister for Work and Employment
In office
20 July 1984 – 7 August 1999
Prime MinisterJacques Santer
Preceded byJacques Santer
Succeeded byFrançois Biltgen
Member of the Chamber of Deputies
In office
July 1984 – December 2013
Personal details
Born9 December 1954 (age 64)
Redange, Luxembourg
Political partyChristian Social People's Party
Spouse(s)Christiane Frising
Alma materUniversity of Strasbourg
Signature
Jean-Claude Juncker's signature
WebsiteOfficial website

Early life and education

Juncker was born in Redange, Luxembourg, and spent the majority of his childhood in Belvaux. He studied at the Roman Catholic "école apostolique" (secondary school) at Clairefontaine on the edge of Arlon in Belgium, before returning to Luxembourg to study for his Baccalaureate at the Lycée Michel Rodange. He joined the Christian Social People's Party in 1974.[9] He studied Law at the University of Strasbourg, graduating with a Masters in Law in 1979, and although he was sworn into the Luxembourg Bar Council in 1980, he never practised as a lawyer.

Juncker is fluent in his native language of Luxembourgish, along with French, German, and English.[10]

Career in Luxembourgish politics

Early years

Following Juncker's graduation from the University of Strasbourg, he was appointed as a Parliamentary Secretary. He later won election to the Chamber of Deputies for the first time in 1984 and was immediately appointed to the Cabinet of Prime Minister Jacques Santer as Minister of Labour.[9] This led to his being given a chairman's role at a number of meetings of the Council of the European Communities, where Juncker's pro-Europe credentials first emerged.

Shortly before the 1989 election Juncker was seriously injured in a road accident, spending two weeks in a coma.[9] He has stated that the accident has caused him difficulty with balancing since.[11] He nonetheless recovered in time to be returned to the Chamber of Deputies once more, after which he was promoted to become Minister for Finance, a post traditionally seen as a rite of passage to the premiership of the country. His eventual promotion to Prime Minister seemed at this time inevitable, with political commentators concluding that Santer was grooming Juncker as his successor. Juncker at this time also accepted the position of Luxembourg's representative on the 188-member board of Governors of the World Bank.[9]

Juncker's second election to Parliament saw him gain prominence within the European Union; Juncker chaired the Council of Economic and Financial Affairs (ECOFIN), becoming a key architect of the Maastricht Treaty. Juncker was largely responsible for clauses on Economic and Monetary Union, the process that would eventually give rise to the Euro, and was himself a signatory to the Treaty in 1992, by which time he had taken over as parliamentary leader of the Christian Social People's Party.[9]

Juncker was re-elected to the Chamber in 1994, maintaining his ministerial role. With Santer ready to be nominated as the next President of the European Commission, it was only six months later that Grand Duke Jean approved the appointment of Juncker as Prime Minister on 20 January 1995, as part of a coalition with the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party. Juncker relinquished his post at the World Bank at this time, but maintained his position as Minister for Finance.[9]

Premiership

Vladimir Putin in Luxembourg 24 May 2007-22
Juncker with Russian President Vladimir Putin on 24 May 2007

Juncker's first term as Prime Minister was focused on an economic platform of international bilateral ties to improve Luxembourg's profile abroad, which included a number of official visits abroad. During one such visit, to Dublin in December 1996, Juncker successfully mediated a dispute over his own EU Economic and Monetary Union policy between French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl. The press dubbed Juncker the "Hero of Dublin" for achieving an unlikely consensus between the two.[12]

1997 brought the rotating Presidency of the European Council to Luxembourg, during which time Juncker championed the cause of social integration in Europe, along with constituting the so-called "Luxembourg Process" for integrated European policy against unemployment. He also instigated the "Euro 11", an informal group of European finance ministers for matters regarding his Economic and Monetary Union ideals. For all of these initiatives, he was honoured with the Vision for Europe Award in 1998.[13]

Juncker succeeded in winning another term as Prime Minister in the 1999 election, although the coalition with the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party was broken in favour of one with the Democratic Party. After the 2004 election, the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party became the second largest party again, and Juncker again formed a coalition with them.[9]

In 2005, Juncker inherited a second term as President of the European Council. Shortly after the expiration of his term came Luxembourg's referendum on ratification, and Juncker staked his political career on its success, promising to resign if the referendum failed. The final result was a 56.5% Yes vote on an 88% turnout. His continued allegiance to European ideals earned him the 2006 Karlspreis. In 2009, he denounced the lifting of the excommunication of controversial Bishop Richard Williamson, a member of the Society of Saint Pius X.[14]

Flickr - europeanpeoplesparty - EPP Summit 29 October 2009 (89)
Juncker with French Prime Minister François Fillon on 29 October 2009

Juncker supported the 2011 military intervention in Libya. Juncker added that he wanted NATO to take control of coalition military efforts in Libya as soon as possible.[15]

On 19 November 2012, RTL Télé Lëtzebuerg aired a story alleging that the former head of the State Intelligence Service (SREL), Marco Mille, had used a wristwatch to covertly record a confidential conversation with Juncker in 2008.[16][17] According to the report, although Juncker had later found out about the recording, he took no action against Mille and allowed him to leave the service in 2010 for a position with Siemens.[16][18] A transcript of the conversation was published by D'Lëtzebuerger Land, which highlighted the disorganised state of the secret service, mentioned links between Grand Duke Henri and MI6 and referred to the "Bommeleeër" scandal.[19][20] On 4 December 2012, the Chamber of Deputies voted to set up a Parliamentary Inquiry into allegations of SREL misconduct including the illegal bugging of politicians, purchase of cars for private use and allegations of taking payments and favours in exchange for access to officials.[21][22] The inquiry heard from witnesses who claimed that SREL had conducted six or seven illegal wiretapping operations between 2007 and 2009, as well as covert operations in Iraq, Cuba and Libya.[23][24] The report concluded that Juncker had to bear political responsibility for SREL's activities, that he had been deficient in his control over the service and that he had failed to report all of the service's irregularities to the enquiry commission.[22][25] Juncker himself denied wrongdoing.[26]

After a seven-hour debate in the Chamber of Deputies on 10 July, the withdrawal of support from the Christian Social People's Party's coalition partner, the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP), forced Juncker to agree to new elections.[27] Alex Bodry, President of LSAP and Chair of the Parliamentary Inquiry into SREL, declared his lack of confidence in Juncker, saying: "We invite the prime minister to take full political responsibility in this context and ask the government to intervene with the head of state to clear the path for new elections."[26] Juncker tendered his resignation to the Grand Duke on 11 July.[22] After the election, Juncker was succeeded on 4 December 2013 by Xavier Bettel.[28][29]

Career in European politics

Presidency of the Eurogroup

In 2004, the Eurogroup of eurozone finance ministers decided to replace the rotating chairmanship with a permanent president. Juncker was appointed as the first permanent president and assumed the chair on 1 January 2005. He was re-appointed for a second term in September 2006.[30] Under the Lisbon Treaty, this system was formalised and Juncker was confirmed for another term.[31] Juncker stepped down on 21 January 2013, when he was succeeded by Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem.

During his period as "Mr. Euro", the group was instrumental in negotiating and supervising bailout packages for the countries that faced bankruptcy: Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Cyprus.[32]

Juncker was also an outspoken proponent of enhanced internal co-operation and increased international representation of the group.[33]

In a debate in 2011, during the height of the eurozone crisis, Juncker responded to a conference-goer's suggestion to increase the openness of the strategy discussions in the eurogroup, by stating: "When it becomes serious you have to lie".[34] Scholars of financial markets have remarked that the quote is often taken out of context by critics; best practice amongst monetary policy committees in most states is to keep negotiations on decisions confidential to prevent markets from betting against troubled countries until they are finalised. This need is complicated by the Eurozone's arrangements, in which policy negotiations are held in high-profile international summits of eurozone finance ministers, where leaks of ongoing negotiations may potentially put "millions of people at risk".[34] Indeed, the quote continues;

Monetary policy is a serious issue. We should discuss this in secret, in the Eurogroup. ... The same applies to economic and monetary policies in the Union. If we indicate possible decisions, we are fuelling speculations on the financial markets and we are throwing in misery mainly the people we are trying to safeguard from this. ... I'm ready to be insulted as being insufficiently democratic, but I want to be serious, ... I am for secret, dark debates.

— Juncker, on the constraints to openness from market actors during the financial crisis, 20 April 2011.[35] It should be noted that this comment has been considered a quip.[36]

He further stated that when asked by a journalist to comment on those meetings he had had to lie, making clear it went against his personal moral conviction as a Catholic.[37]

Presidency of the Commission

Jean-Claude Juncker (13598019925)
Juncker delivering a speech at the election congress of the People's Party in March 2014

For the first time in 2014, the President of the European Commission was appointed under the new provisions established with the Treaty of Lisbon, which had entered into force after the 2009 Elections to the European Parliament, on 1 December 2009. Juncker's aide Martin Selmayr played a central role in his campaign and later during his presidency as Juncker's campaign director, head of Juncker's transition team and finally as Juncker's head of cabinet (chief of staff).

Primary election

Laophorium Ioannis Claudii Juncker anno 2014
The campaign bus of Jean-Claude Juncker used for the 2014 election

All factions of the parliament, except the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) and the Europe of Freedom and Democracy group (EFD), entered a lead candidate, or spitzenkandidat, each in the election campaign. At the Election Congress of the European People's Party (EPP), held in Dublin on 6–7 March, Jean-Claude Juncker was elected the party's lead candidate for President of the Commission, defeating Michel Barnier. The congress also adopted the EPP election manifesto.[38][39]

Election campaign

In the main debate between the candidates, transmitted live throughout Europe on 16 May via the European Broadcasting Union, all candidates agreed that it would be unacceptable if the European Council would propose someone as Commission President who had not publicly campaigned for the position ahead of the election.[40]

In the elections, held 22–25 May, the EPP won the most parliamentary seats of all parties (221 of 751), but short of a majority in its own right.[41]

Institutional approval

On 27 May, the leaders of five of the seven political groups of the parliament issued a statement that Jean-Claude Juncker, being the lead candidate of the party which won a plurality of the seats, should be given the first attempt to form the required majority to be elected Commission President. Only the ECR and EFD disagreed to this process.[42][43]

EPP Brussels Summit; Mar. 2014 (13286858885)
Juncker with Ukrainian PM Arseniy Yatseniuk, EPP summit in Brussels, 20 March 2014

Later on 27 May, the European Council gave its president, Herman van Rompuy, the mandate to start consultations with the group leaders in the European Parliament to identify the best possible candidate. Having less influence over the appointment than under pre-Lisbon law, the Council instead made use of its right to set the strategic priorities, and included discussions with Parliament leaders and Council members alike for a strategic agenda for the upcoming period in Rompuy's mandate.[44]

During the consultations, Juncker and the EPP agreed to cooperation with the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D), the second largest group in the new parliament, as well as secured the backing of all but two member state leaders. In return for their support, the centre-left group and state leaders secured promises of a shift in focus away from austerity towards growth and job creation for the coming period, as well as promises of some of the top jobs.[45][46][47][48]

G7 summit at Shimakan
G7 leaders in Japan, 26 May 2016
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the President European Council Donald Tusk, and the President European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, at the EU-INDIA Summit
Indian PM Narendra Modi with Juncker and Donald Tusk, at the EU-India Summit, Brussels, 2016
EPP Summit, 22 June 2017 (35423930556)
Juncker with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in June 2017
Volodymyr Groysman with Jean-Claude Juncker - 2018 (MUS7494)
Juncker with Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman in Brussels in May 2018

The European Council officially proposed Juncker to Parliament as candidate for the Presidency on 27 June, together with a strategic agenda setting out policy priorities for the upcoming Commission mandate period.[49]

For the first time the nomination was not by consensus, but the European Council voted 26-2 to propose Juncker for the position. Voting against were British PM David Cameron (Conservative Party / ECR) and Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán (Fidesz / EPP), both of whom had frequently opposed Juncker during the election process. Prior to the vote, various media had reported the heads of government of Sweden, Netherlands and Germany were also having similar concerns regarding either the candidate himself, or the way the nomination process was conducted.[50][51] This was however never confirmed by the politicians in question.

Once Juncker had been nominated by the Council he started visiting all of the political groups of the European Parliament in order to explain his visions as well as gain their support in order to get appointed as Commission President. The purpose was also to show that he had understood some criticism levelled by Eurosceptics in Brussels. This was demonstrated when the former Prime Minister of Luxembourg told the ECR lawmakers that "[d]espite what you may read in the British press, I do not want a United States of Europe," as well as "I do not believe that Europe can be constructed against the nation state."[52]

On 15 July, Juncker presented his political programme to the European Parliament in plenary. Following a debate, the MEPs appointed Juncker to the position of Commission President with 422 votes in favour, well over the 376 required, and 250 votes against.[53]

Controversies

In early November 2014, just days after becoming head of the commission, Juncker was hit by media disclosures—derived from a document leak known as LuxLeaks—that Luxembourg under his premiership had turned into a major European centre of corporate tax avoidance. With the aid of the Luxembourg government, companies transferred tax liability for many billions of euros to Luxembourg, where the income was taxed at a fraction of 1%. Juncker, who in a speech in Brussels in July 2014 promised to "try to put some morality, some ethics, into the European tax landscape", was sharply criticised following the leaks.[54] A subsequent motion of censure in the European Parliament was brought against Juncker over his role in the tax avoidance schemes. The motion was defeated by a large majority.[55]

In 2017, leaked diplomatic cables show Juncker, as Luxembourg's prime minister from 1995 until the end of 2013, blocked EU efforts to fight tax avoidance by multinational corporations. Luxembourg agreed to multinational businesses on an individualised deal basis, often at an effective rate of less than 1%.[56]

On 22 May 2015, at the EU summit in Riga, Latvia, Juncker, alongside EU President Donald Tusk and Latvian PM Laimdota Straujuma, greeted EU leaders in a way unusual to diplomacy. For instance he tried to convince the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to wear a tie by offering his own piece.[57] He also remarked on Karl-Heinz Lambertz being overweight and patted his belly. Juncker slapped his former deputy, the Luxembourgish Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn, as well as kissed Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel's bald head.[58] But the most unexpected incident happened when Hungarian premier Viktor Orbán arrived and Juncker addressed him, using the expression "the dictator is coming", following it with a warm handshake and a slight slap on the cheek.[59] Later spokesperson Margaritis Schinas called the event only a "joke". "Juncker is known for his very informal style", he said and added "I wouldn’t make anything else out of this".[60]

In August 2016, Juncker received criticism over his remarks on immigration at the European Forum Alpbach in Austria. During his speech Juncker, a supporter of Angela Merkel's open door response to the European migrant crisis, made news by telling the audience that "borders are the worst invention ever made by politicians".[61]

Upon hearing the news of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro's death in December 2016, Juncker said that "With the death of Fidel Castro, the world has lost a man who was a hero for many."[62]

In July 2017, Juncker described the European Parliament as "ridiculous" after only a few dozen MEPs came to attend a debate dedicated to evaluating Malta’s six months in the EU presidency chair, accusing MEPs of showing a lack of respect for smaller EU countries.[63] Although rebuked for his remark by the Parliament’s president, Antonio Tajani, Juncker responded “I will never again attend a meeting of this kind.”[63] Jaume Duch Guillot, chief spokesman for the Parliament, later said on Twitter that Juncker “regretted” the incident and that Tajani considered the case closed. However, it is not known whether Juncker apologised for his outburst.[64]

On 4 May 2018, Juncker attended and spoke at a celebration of Karl Marx’s 200th birthday, where he defended Marx's legacy and unveiled an eighteen-foot bronze statue of Marx donated by the Chinese government.[65][66][67][68][69] Critics accused Juncker of insulting victims of communism.[70][65] MEPs from Hungary’s ruling Fidesz party wrote: "Marxist ideology led to the death of tens of millions and ruined the lives of hundreds of millions. The celebration of its founder is a mockery of their memory."[71]

Health issues

Juncker claims that because of a 1989 car accident, he suffers from sciatica attacks,[72] which he says cause him occasional unsteadiness while walking.[73]

Speculations about alcoholism have been surrounding Juncker for several years and have been discussed by several high-profile EU politicians.[74][75] In 2014, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, at the time Dutch Minister of Finance, described Juncker in an interview as a "heavy smoker and drinker", but later apologized for his comments.[76] Juncker himself has always denied these allegations in interviews.[77][78]

Awards and decorations

National honours

Academic and other distinctions

See also

References

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External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Jacques Santer
Minister for Work and Employment
1984–1999
Succeeded by
François Biltgen
Minister for Finances
1989–2009
Succeeded by
Luc Frieden
Prime Minister of Luxembourg
1995–2013
Succeeded by
Xavier Bettel
Preceded by
Luc Frieden
Minister for the Treasury
2009–2013
Vacant
Preceded by
Martine Reicherts
Luxembourgish European Commissioner
2014–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
José Manuel Barroso
President of the European Commission
2014–present
Party political offices
Preceded by
Jean Spautz
Leader of the Christian Social People's Party
1990–1995
Succeeded by
Erna Hennicot-Schoepges
Diplomatic posts
New office President of the Eurogroup
2005–2013
Succeeded by
Jeroen Dijsselbloem
Academic offices
Preceded by
Javier Solana
Invocation Speaker of the College of Europe
2006
Succeeded by
David Miliband
Preceded by
Alexander Stubb
Invocation Speaker of the College of Europe
2016
Succeeded by
António Costa
2004 Luxembourg general election

General elections were held in Luxembourg on 13 June 2004, alongside European Parliament elections. The ruling Christian Social People's Party (CSV) of Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker won the election, increasing its number of seats to its highest since before 1989 and its share of the vote to levels not seen since the 1959 election.

As expected, the CSV won a plurality of seats, adding 5 new deputies, and continued as the majority partner in the coalition government. However, the junior partner changed from the liberal Democratic Party (DP), which lost 5 seats, to the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP), which gained one seat. The Greens also slightly increased their representation, whilst the Alternative Democratic Reform Party (ADR) lost ground.

The election coincided with the 2004 European Parliament election.

2005 Luxembourg European Constitution referendum

The Luxembourgish referendum on the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe is a referendum that was held on 10 July 2005 to decide whether Luxembourg should ratify the proposed Constitution of the European Union.

56.52% of the 220,717 voters said "yes". Voting bureaus were open from 8am till 2pm.

Luxembourg was the 13th EU member state to approve the EU treaty. It was the second referendum with a vote in favor of the EU treaty (after Spain) and the first referendum since the French and the Dutch voters rejected the EU treaty. Jean-Claude Juncker, Luxembourgish PM, expected a close vote. The last opinion poll a month before the referendum indicated a small advantage for the "yes", but a substantial 16% of non-decided.

The referendum was Luxembourg's first since 1937. Luxembourg is traditionally regarded as one of the EU's most enthusiastic member states, and most prominent political figures support the Constitution, with both the governing coalition and the main opposition parties campaigning for a 'yes' vote.

The poll was consultative in nature but the parliament agreed to abide by the people's majority vote. Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker had said he would resign if the referendum resulted in a 'no' vote. [1]

On 28 June 2005, Luxembourg's parliament approved the constitution in advance of the referendum. [2]

2009 Luxembourg general election

General elections were held in Luxembourg on 7 June 2009, together with the 2009 election to the European Parliament. All sixty members of the Chamber of Deputies were elected for five years. The polls were topped by the Christian Social People's Party, which built upon its already high number of seats to achieve a commanding victory, with the highest vote share and number of seats of any party since 1954. Incumbent Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, who is longest serving head of government in the European Union, renewed the coalition agreement with Deputy Prime Minister and Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party leader Jean Asselborn and formed the Juncker-Asselborn Ministry II, which was sworn-in on 23 July 2009.

2013 Luxembourg general election

Early general elections were held in Luxembourg on 20 October 2013. The elections were called after Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, at the time the longest serving head of government in the European Union, announced his resignation over a spy scandal involving the Service de Renseignement de l'Etat (SREL). The review found Juncker deficient in his control over the service.The elections saw Juncker's Christian Social People's Party lose three seats, but remain the largest party in the Chamber of Deputies with 23 of the 60 seats.

Christian Social People's Party

The Christian Social People's Party (Luxembourgish: Chrëschtlech Sozial Vollekspartei, French: Parti populaire chrétien social, German: Christlich Soziale Volkspartei), abbreviated to CSV or PCS, is the largest political party in Luxembourg. The party follows a Christian-democratic ideology and, like most parties in Luxembourg, is strongly pro-European. The CSV is a member of the European People's Party (EPP) and the Centrist Democrat International (CDI).

The CSV has been the largest party in the Chamber of Deputies since the party's formation, and currently holds 23 of 60 seats in the Chamber. Since the Second World War, every Prime Minister of Luxembourg has been a member of the CSV, with only two exceptions: Gaston Thorn (1974–1979), and Xavier Bettel (2013–). It holds three of Luxembourg's six seats in the European Parliament, as it has for 20 of the 30 years for which MEPs have been directly elected.

The party's President is Marc Spautz. However, the leading figure from the party is the former Prime Minister, Jean-Claude Juncker, who previously governed in coalition with the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP) until the 2013 general election.

Elżbieta Bieńkowska

Elżbieta Bieńkowska (Polish pronunciation: [ɛlʐˈbʲiɛta bʲiɛɲˈkɔfska]; née Moycho; born on 4 February 1964 in Katowice) is a Polish politician who served as Poland's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Regional Development and Transport before being nominated as European Commissioner by Jean-Claude Juncker in 2014.Bieńkowska was Minister of Regional Development in Prime Minister Donald Tusk's Cabinet from 16 November 2007 until 27 November 2013, when she was appointed Deputy Prime Minister of Poland while continuing her previous responsibilities at the Ministry of Infrastructure and Development.

European Defence Fund

The European Defence Fund is a fund managed by the European Union (EU) for coordinating and increasing national investment in defence research and improve interoperability between national forces. It was proposed in 2016 by President Jean-Claude Juncker and established in 2017. The fund has two stands; research (€90 million until the end of 2019 and €500 million per year after 2020) and development & acquisition (€500 million in total for 2019-20 then €1 billion per year after 2020). In July 2018, The European Commission announces that the budget for 2021-2027 will be €13 billion.Together with the Coordinated Annual Review on Defence and Permanent Structured Cooperation it forms a new comprehensive defence package for the EU.

Georges Wohlfart

Dr Georges Wohlfart (13 July 1950 – 13 February 2013) was a Luxembourgian politician.

Wohlfart was born in 1950 in Helmdange. A member of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party, he served in consecutive cabinets, under Jacques Santer and Jean-Claude Juncker, from 1989 until 1999, holding positions including Minister of Health (1998–1999) and Trade Minister.

Jean Asselborn

Jean Asselborn (pronounced [ˈʒɑ̃ː ˈɑsəlboʁn]; born 27 April 1949) is a Luxembourgish politician who has served in the government of Luxembourg as Minister for Foreign Affairs since 2004. He also served as Deputy Prime Minister from 2004 to 2013, under Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker.

Juncker Commission

The Juncker Commission is the European Commission in office since 1 November 2014 and is due to serve until 2019. Its president is Jean-Claude Juncker, who presides over 27 other commissioners (one from each of the states composing the European Union, except Luxembourg, which is Juncker's state). In July 2014, Juncker was officially elected to succeed José Manuel Barroso, who completed his second five-year term in that year.

Juncker–Asselborn Ministry II

Juncker–Asselborn Ministry II was the government of Luxembourg between 23 July 2009 and 11 July 2013. It was led by, and named after, Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker and Deputy Prime Minister Jean Asselborn. It was formed on 23 July 2009, after the 2009 election to the Chamber of Deputies.

It fell after the withdrawal of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party from the government; Prime Minister Juncker submitted his resignation to the Grand Duke on 11 July 2013, and a snap election was called.

Juncker–Poos Ministry

The Juncker–Poos Ministry was the government of Luxembourg between 26 January 1995 and 7 August 1999. It was led by, and named after, Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker and Deputy Prime Minister Jacques Poos.

Juncker became Prime Minister after his predecessor, Jacques Santer, was appointed President of the European Commission. However, the Juncker-Poos Ministry was essentially a continuation of the third Santer-Poos Ministry, both being coalitions between Santer's and Juncker's Christian Social People's Party (CSV) and Poos' Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP), the largest and second-largest parties in the legislature.

The Juncker-Poos government came to an end after the general election of 1999, in which the CSV remained the largest party, but the LSAP was beaten into third place by the Democratic Party. Hence, the CSV formed a new coalition with the DP.

List of ambassadors of China to Luxembourg

The Chinese ambassador in Luxembourg City is the official representative of the Government in Beijing to the Government of Luxembourg.

The governments in Luxembourg City and Taipei recognized each other: from 1948 to October 26, 1971, the Taiwanese Ambassador in Brussels was coaccredited in Luxembourg City .

On December 16, 1964, the diplomatic rank of the Legation in Luxembourg City was elevated to that of an embassy.

Since |April 1988 the ambassador has his residence in Luxembourg City

List of ambassadors of Luxembourg to China

The Luxembourger ambassador in Beijing is the official representative of the Government in Luxembourg City to the Government of the People's Republic of China concurrently accredited in Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia), Hanoi (Vietnam) and Singapore.

Lycée Michel Rodange

Lycée Michel Rodange, abbreviated to LMRL, is a high school in Luxembourg City, in southern Luxembourg. It is located on Campus Geesseknäppchen, along with several other educational institutions, most of which, including Lycée Michel Rodange, is in the quarter of Hollerich, in the south-west of the city.It was founded by law on 5 August 1968 as the 'Nouveau Lycée de Luxembourg' (English: Luxembourg New School), but was renamed by Grand Ducal decree on 19 January 1970 to its current name, after Michel Rodange, the author of Luxembourg's national epic, Rénert the Fox. Rodange counts Jean-Claude Juncker, the previous Prime Minister of Luxembourg, Charel Trufelli and Maëlle Gengler amongst its alumni.

Martin Selmayr

Martin Selmayr (born 5 December 1970) is a German civil servant who has been the Secretary-General of the European Commission since 1 March 2018. Previously, he was Chief of Staff to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, having previously worked as Juncker's campaign director and head of transition before he took office. Following his appointment as Juncker's chief of staff, Selmayr was widely described as one of the most influential figures within the European Commission. After taking office as Secretary-General, he was described in a debate in the European Parliament as "the most powerful bureaucrat in the world." A resident of Brussels since 2000, he is a member of the Christian Democratic and Flemish (CD&V) party of Belgium. He is considered by many to be close to the Christian Democratic Union of Germany and its leadership, but the European Commission said he has never been a member of that party.

Redange

Redange or Redange-sur-Attert (Luxembourgish: Réiden, German: Redingen) is a commune and town in western Luxembourg, near the border with Belgium. It is the capital of the canton of Redange. Redange is situated on the river Attert, a tributary of the Alzette.

As of 2005, the town of Redange, which lies in the west of the commune, has a population of 1,099. Other towns within the commune include Lannen, Nagem, Niederpallen, Ospern, and Reichlange.

Redange is the birthplace of the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker.

State of the Union (European Union)

The State of the Union address, also known as the State of the European Union, or SOTEU is the annual speech addressed by the President of the European Commission to the European Parliament plenary session in September. The State of the Union address of the European Union has been instituted by the Lisbon Treaty (with the 2010 Framework

Agreement on relations between the European Parliament and the European Commission - Annex IV(5)), in order to make political life of the Union more democratic and transparent than it hitherto was.

The Framework Agreement thus also foresees that the President of the European Commission sends a letter of intent to the President of the European Parliament and the Presidency of the Council of the European Union that sets out in detail the actions the European Commission intends to take by means of legislation and other initiatives until the end of the following year. The address is then followed by a general debate on political situation of the Union, the so-called State of the Union debate.

Steiger Award

The Steiger Award or Der Steiger is an international award established in 2005 and presented annually by the award organization based in Bochum, Germany. The title refers to steiger (mining foreman), reflecting the qualities of responsibility, honesty, openness and hard work valued in the Ruhr region where the award is presented.The award was created by private initiative and is presented annually to individuals who are notable for accomplishments in charity, music, film, media, sports, the environment and building of the European community.Past winners include Nena, Egon Bahr, Udo Jürgens, Jean-Claude Juncker, Boris Becker, David Frost, Bob Geldof, Maximilian Schell, Richard Chamberlain, Stefanie Powers, Robin Gibb, Christopher Lee, Mark Knopfler, Klaus Meine, Roger Daltrey, Jean Michel Jarre, Bonnie Tyler and Peter Lindbergh.

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