MEPs backed Neven Mimica to become Croatia's member of the European Commission in a secret ballot on Wedneseday. If appointed, Mr Mimica will take the new "consumer policy" portfolio. MEPs have long argued that consumer issues need to be given higher priority.

At his committee hearing on 4 June, Mr Mimica summarized his priorities as: "Consolidation, Cooperation and Communication" and pledged to work fully with Parliament. He was approved by both the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee and the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee.

Parliament as a whole endorsed his nomination by 565 votes to 64, with 64 abstentions.

The new Commissioner is to be formally appointed at the June European Council by a qualified majority vote. He would then join Commission President José Manuel Barroso's team on 1 July 2013, the day when Croatia joins the EU and serve until 31 October 2014, when a new Commission takes over