The European Parliament will vote on the new commission's confirmation on October 23rd, and if approved, the commission will assume its mandate on November 1st.
Croatia's candidate for European Commissioner for Democracy and Demographics and one of the commission's Vice-presidents, Dubravka Šuica, was questioned by the Constitutional Committee and other relevant committees of the European Parliament this evening. Šuica is a member of the HDZ/EPP.
One of the MEPs present for the questioning was Croatia’s Biljana Borzan, a member of the SDP/S&D. Domestically Borzan’s SDP has joined in NGO’s questioning the origin of Šuica’s assets, allegedly valued at some €5 million.
The coordinator of the European People's Party on the Constitutional Committee Danuta Hubner, one of the officials who will give a final evaluation of Šuica's hearing, said on Thursday that she doesn’t expect there to be any problems during her confirmation process.
"I don't expect her to have problems. She is known and has a good reputation, she's a member of parliament. Naturally it will be challenging and there will be difficult questions. We have colleagues that approach everything from an activist point of view. They pose questions that were not traditionally posed until now. As far as questions being asked in Croatia, we didn't discuss this within our political group," Hubner said.
Commission President-elect Ursula von der Leyen has also nominated Šuica to lead the team in charge of a two-year conference on the future of Europe. "Dear colleagues, there's no time to waste. The president-elect has set an ambitious timetable by announcing that the conference will start in 2020, and will run for two years. This is why, if confirmed by you, I will work with this house, with the council and all others involved to agree on the concept, structure, format, timing and scope of the conference," Šuica told the committee members.
Croatia's outgoing commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, feels that Croatia has been offered an excellent portfolio to work with.
"In the context of what Croatia can do for Europe with this kind of portfolio and the function of vice-president of the European Commission, I think that my colleague, Dubravka Šuica truly has an excellent opportunity to raise Croatia's contribution to the EU, but also to raise its reputation, and to raise the level of recognition Croatia has received as a relatively new member of the bloc to one that is above its specific position in European relations," Mimica told Croatian Television.