• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Sweden onside as EU set to give Juncker top job

AFP/The Local · 27 Jun 2014, 10:12

Published: 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.

Story continues below…

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 news from Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Meat-free days soaring in Swedish schools
Meat-free days are up by as much as 80 percent in Swedish schools. Photo: Lunds Universitet/TT

The number of Swedish schools ditching meat has grown significantly according to a study of municipal environmental credentials by a sustainability magazine.

Why these recalled Ikea drawers ‘can result in death’
Ikea demonstrates the potential danger at a news conference in Washington. Photo: Carolyn Kaster/AP/TT

Swedish furniture giant Ikea said on Tuesday that 35 million chests and dresser units recalled in North America can 'result in death or injuries to children' if not properly anchored.

The Local List
Five things to do in Stockholm when it empties for summer
Photo: Henrik Trygg/visitstockholm.com

The Swedish capital can feel a bit empty during the summer, but fear not, there are ways to enjoy it.

Brexit: Swedes in the UK
'My Swedish friends and I talk about moving to Scotland'
Moving further north is one post-Brexit option touted by a UK-based Swede The Local spoke to. Photo: Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP/TT Hasse Holmberg/TT

The Local speaks to UK-based Swedes on the impact they think Brexit will have on their lives and their future plans in the country.

Sweden wins seat on UN Security Council
Foreign Minister Margot Wallström and UN Ambassador Olof Skoog beam as Sweden wins its seat. Photo: Pontus Lundahl

A dream come true for Sweden's government.

Swedish billionaire missing at sea
Christer Ericsson has been missing since Monday. Photo: Leif R Jansson/TT

A high profile Swedish businessman is missing at sea after a boat accident near Marstrand off the Gothenburg coast.

Ikea to recall chests of drawers after child deaths
The drawers are only being recalled in the US and Canada. Photo: Cornelius Poppe/NTB scanpix/TT

The Swedish furniture giant will recall a popular chest of drawers model in North America after six children were crushed to death.

Swedish stocks rebound from post-Brexit collapse
The interior of the Stockholm Stock Exchange. Photo: Fredrik Sanberg/TT

On Tuesday the Stockholm Stock Exchange started to bounce back from a Brexit-inspired worst day of trading since 1986.

Man shot dead in Stockholm suburb
A police technician examines the scene in Tensta. Photo: Johan Jeppsson/TT

Swedish police were kept busy on Monday night after a fatal shooting in Stockholm, an attempted murder in Malmö, and a spate of car fires in Gothenburg.

Euro 2016
The humble Swede who sent England home from Euro 2016
Iceland's Swedish coach Lars Lagerbäck. Photo: Ciaran Farey/AP/TT

Is Swede Lars Lagerbäck, who guided Iceland to victory over England at Euro 2016, the world's best football coach?

Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Gallery
Property of the week: Torhamn
Sponsored Article
5 reasons you should try dating with The Inner Circle
International
'A morning of sorrow': Sweden reacts to Brexit vote
International
Sweden opposition cools talk of 'Swexit' poll
Blog updates

28 June

A message for British expats in Sweden (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"The people of the United Kingdom have voted to leave the European Union. As Prime Minister…" READ »

 

10 June

i lördags, på lördag – time phrases for present, past and future (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hejsan! Swedish time phrases can be difficult to master. It takes a lot of practice to…" READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
How to find student housing in Malmö: 5 tips
International
'Devastated' - Brits in Sweden shocked by Brexit vote
Sponsored Article
Stockholm school celebrates Nepal Project success
Gallery
People-watching: June 22nd
Private
The Local Voices
'Swedes don't treat me differently because I wear a hijab'
Culture
How do Swedes celebrate Midsummer?
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Culture
Coming soon: Sweden’s smelly fermented fish
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
National
Assange lawyer: Sweden should recognize UN opinion
Private
The Local Voices
Why is this Syrian dentist who hugs like a Swede worried about undies?
Sponsored Article
Education abroad: How to find an international school
Swedish nationalist 'shot and ate' lion and giraffe
Sponsored Article
The man behind Sweden's biggest music festival
Analysis & Opinion
'Sweden's residency revamp is harmful and inhumane'
Photo: The Local
The Local Voices
UNHCR boss: 'It's hard to start your life without your family'
Sponsored Article
US expats: Have you met your tax deadlines?
Politics
VIDEO: Brits in Europe say why UK should stay
Sponsored Article
Malmö: Home to the best food in Sweden?
Photo: Marko Risović
The Local Voices
World Refugee Day: Searching for safety in Europe - in pictures
Sponsored Article
VIDEO: Why Malmö is the world's 6th best city for biking
National
Is Swedish nationalists’ foreign food ban bananas?
Sponsored Article
5 reasons you should try dating with The Inner Circle
Gallery
Property of the week: Söråker
International
Poll shows huge support for EU in Sweden
Sponsored Article
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
The Local Voices
How a Syrian scuba diver mobilized Sweden's biggest asylum centre
Sport
Zlatan: 'If we'd been fighting for real, he'd be in hospital'
The Local Voices
Orlando reflections: Is it possible to be gay and Muslim?
Sweden to go ahead with migrant age tests
Gallery
People-watching: June 17th-19th
3,281
jobs available
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:
psdmedia.se