S&Ds demand further clarification on Cañete’s conflict of interest before any vote

commissioner-designate Miguel Arias Cañete

Yesterday Socialists and Democrats asked for the postponement of the vote on commissioner-designate Miguel Arias Cañete ahead of a meeting between the spokespersons of all political groups in the energy and environment parliamentary committees this morning.

S&D Vice-president Kathleen Van Brempt said:

“At the beginning of the hearing yesterday I introduced a point of order to demand a clarification from the legal affairs committee on Mr Cañete’s financial declaration. We want this clarification before we vote.

"We didn't get good answers on the potential conflict between his family ties with the oil industry in Spain and his portfolio.

“Unfortunately his explanations during the hearing didn’t shed much light: he refused three times to answer our questions about his brother-in-law's interests in the oil company of which Cañete recently sold his shares.

S&D spokesperson on climate and environment, MEP Matthias Groote, added:

“Mr Cañete made many general statements about the importance of climate change and the need to mainstream sustainability in all policy areas. However, he did not convince our Group of his genuine belief in what he said.

“His record as a minister in Spain shows how little he implemented the measures which he now so strongly defends. Over the course of the hearing he said that he left hard decisions in the hands of experts. Well, we need a commissioner with a vision who can ensure that climate policies and sustainability will be at the core of his/her portfolio.”