• Sweden edition
 
Sweden onside as EU set to give Juncker top job
File picture from 2012 shows Jean-Claude Juncker greeting Germany's Angela Merkel, who supports his candidacy. Photo: AP

Sweden onside as EU set to give Juncker top job

Published: 27 Jun 2014 10:12 GMT+02:00
Updated: 27 Jun 2014 10:12 GMT+02:00

Juncker's candidacy for the EU Commission presidency was given a boost earlier in the week as Sweden announced it could back his bid.

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said on Friday that he still thinks the new election process is "the wrong way to do this", but that the country will back Juncker.

Sweden's support for Juncker leaves British Prime Minister David Cameron -- who is opposed to the appointment -- increasingly isolated ahead of an EU summit that is expected to be marked by a conflict over the key position.

"If Jean-Claude Juncker attracts a qualified majority of heads of state and government and also has the support of the European Parliament, then the Lisbon Treaty rules have been followed and the government recommends that Sweden joins this majority," Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt told his parliament's EU committee on Wednesday, according to news agency TT.

Cameron has led a campaign against Juncker, who is seen as a federalist not representing Britain's interests -- and has pledged to force the issue to a formal vote at the summit which traditionally makes important decisions by consensus.

But in recent days, it appeared that what little support he had was crumbling.

Reinfeldt had been considered an important ally having criticized the European Parliament's attempt to put forward Juncker as the winning candidate under new EU rules that give the parliament a bigger say.

"We do not support the idea because it would make it impossible for any other candidate and rule out a lot of potential commission presidents," Reinfeldt told the Financial Times two weeks ago.

When Reinfeldt played host to Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands at a mini-summit in Sweden on June 10th, his position appeared to be closer to Cameron than to the pro-Juncker German leader.

But despite taking a step back from cooperation with Cameron, Reinfeldt added on Friday that the UK "has friends in the EU". 

"We like British politics and we like British people - perhaps we should voice that more strongly," Reinfeldt said.

A European Council summit in Brussels on Friday is scheduled to approve a candidate for the presidency of the European Commission.

Juncker, 59, is a former prime minister of Luxembourg and has the backing of the European Parliament's largest groups, as well as a growing number of member states from both sides of the left-right divide.

Under EU rules the European Parliament has to be taken into account in the appointment of the Commission president and when the conservative EPP group won the most seats at the May European election the group argued their candidate Jean-Claude Juncker should be nominated.

The parliament also has the power to reject a candidate put forward by member states as it gives the final approval to the appointment.

Britain now faces the unusual prospect in the EU of being beaten in an embarrassing high-level vote which threatens to mar relations between the country and the 28-nation bloc ahead of a referendum on British membership which Cameron has promised to hold by 2017.

For more stories about Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons

A man in central Sweden was sentenced to prison for aggravated assault on Friday after doctors noticed that both his twin sons had sustained serious and unexplained injuries. READ  

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Clocking in. File photo: Shutterstock

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial

Officials finalized plans on Friday for the "Gothenburg guinea pigs" who will test out the six-hour workday, a move it's hoped will cut down on sick leave, boost efficiency, and ultimately save Sweden money. READ  

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job
Photo: Gunnar Lundmark/TT

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job

Three Swedish soldiers risk prison after they were found to be drunk while guarding Stockholm's Royal Palace. The men, who were all armed at the time, were charged on Friday. READ  

Stockholm
What do the Swedes do when summer's over?
Photo: Isabela Vrba

What do the Swedes do when summer's over?

The heatwave is well and truly over, the days are getting shorter, and winter is coming. With this in mind, The Local's Isabela Vrba chatted to ten Stockholmers about how they plan to tackle the autumn. READ  

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend

Swedes are spending more than ever on makeup - and a growing chunk is going directly to their fingernails, new figures showed on Friday. READ  

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops
The pharmacy section of a grocery store. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops

After a drastic increase in the number of paracetamol poisonings in Sweden, authorities have said the drug should only be available in pharmacies. READ  

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden
File photo: Andreas Hagerman/Flickr

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden

After finding traces of listeria in ham sold in Sweden, food companies decided on Friday to recall several Danish cold cuts. READ  

Sweden Floods
More rain expected as floods hit day four
Photo: Anders Kjellberg/TT

More rain expected as floods hit day four

UPDATED: Sweden's floods showed no signs of abating over Thursday night, with highways closed, emergency teams working overtime, and more rain on the way. READ  

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans
An Ikea city centre store in Hamburg. Photo: TT

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans

Swedish furniture giant Ikea has opened its first store in the former Yugoslavia, near Croatia's capital Zagreb. The move marks the company's first step in an expansion to the Balkans market. READ  

Elections 2014
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'

With national elections around the corner, political scientist Stig-Björn Ljunggren says there's a hive of activity behind the scenes, and that the right-wing nationalist party could end up being the key player. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Politics
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching August 20th
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »

 

17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Gallery
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Gallery
People-watching August 16-17
National
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Society
Top ten literal Swedish words
Politics
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Gallery
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Politics
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
National
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
Features
Kiruna residents talk life in a town on the move
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

714
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se