Gianni Pittella: "Gender balance in Commission is essential precondition for S&D support"

Gianni Pittella: "We will not support a European Commission with fewer women than today"

As the talks surrounding the nomination of the new commissioners continue, the S&D Group met today to discuss the main issues such as gender balance and the respect for fundamental EU values.

S&D Group president Gianni Pittella stated:

"We have already made our views clear on this issue but it is worth underlining them once again. The S&D Group will not accept any backward step on the gender balance of the next Commission. This message has to be clear to President Juncker but also to the national governments. Gender balance is the conditio sine qua non – the essential precondition for the S&Ds to back the new Commission team. The final decision on how our group will vote will be closely connected to this.

"However, the gender issue is not the only hurdle we see in the path of the new Commission.

"All of the new commissioners must embody the values and principles which are fundamental to the European Union: democracy, respect for human and civil rights, and respect for the rights of minorities (whether religious, ethnic or linguistic).

"Last but not least, there must be a logical coherence between the commissioners' profiles and the programme proposed by Juncker.

"Finally we must see that the new Commission is a genuine and appropriate representation of the political forces in the Parliament."