Hearing of Commissioner designate Ashton

Following his nomination to the UK Government, Mr Peter Mandelson submitted his resignation as member of the European Commission responsible for Trade on 3 October 2008.

The UK Government notified its intention to designate Baroness Catherine Margaret Ashton of Upholland as the new Commissioner. The President of the European Commission expressed his agreement to this designation and his wish to assign to Baroness Ashton the same portfolio as her predecessor.

On 6 October 2008, the Council of the European Union decided by written procedure to appoint Baroness Ashton member of the European Commission until the end of the current Commission's term of office, on 31 October 2009.

In accordance with the Framework Agreement on relations between the European Parliament and the Commission, it was agreed that Baroness Ashton would appear before Parliament without delay and in full compliance with the prerogatives of the Institutions.

In keeping with its determination to enhance the transparency of the nominations and to give more legitimacy to the appointments of the new Commissioners, the European Parliament is conducting a hearing with Baroness Ashton before the Committee on International Trade on 20 October 2008. To prepare for the hearing, Baroness Ashton has been invited to reply to a written questionnaire. Based on the outcome of the hearing, the European Parliament will proceed to a formal vote in plenary.

For details concerning Baroness Ashton, the hearing and the procedure in general, please click on the respective menu items on the left-hand side of this page.

Watch the full video of the hearing on EP live and subsequently with Video on Demand by clicking on the corresponding menu item or on the "Live Hearings" banner at the top of this page.