Bulgaria’s Mariya Gabriel is being nominated for the Innovation and Youth portfolio in the next European Commission, EC President-elect Ursula von der Leyen told a news conference on September 10.
Gabriel would be responsible for giving a “new perspective to the young generation,” Von der Leyen said.
Mariya Gabriel has been a European Commissioner since July 2017, holding the Digital Economy and Society portfolio.
An MEP before she was appointed to the Commission after Kristalina Georgieva resigned, Gabriel stood as the lead candidate on the ticket of Prime Minister Boiko Borissov’s GERB party in Bulgaria’s May 2019 European Parliament elections. Gabriel declined to take up her seat, choosing to remain in the current Juncker Commission and to be available to serve in the Von der Leyen Commission, which will take office on November 1 2019.
Introducing the nominees for her Commission, Von der Leyen said that she wanted it to be “flexible, agile and modern”.
The Commission, if confirmed by the European Parliament, will have 13 women and 14 men.
Von der Leyen said that the Commission should have a gender and geographical balance.
She said that she wanted the Commission to listen to what Europeans want, and said that she wanted every member to visit every member state in the first half of the Commission’s term of office, and not only the capital cities, but the places where people lived and worked.
Meetings of the Commission would be paperless and digital, Von der Leyen said.