Federica Mogherini succeeds Catherine Ashton as the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission on 1 November. She is also head of the European External Action Service.
Federica Mogherini was appointed High Representative leaders of all 28 European Union Member States in August. Her nomination was approved by a Hearing followed by vote in the European Parliament on the whole European Commission of which she is Vice-President.
Speaking at her European Parliamentary Hearing on 6 October 2014, she said:
“I think the question we need to answer is the questions that our citizens ask us. In this difficult world, in these difficult times, what does the European Union do? Where do we stand? How do we make sure that we play our role in these difficult times?”
“We have our tools. I would say that, after the Lisbon Treaty, we do have these. We do have an External Action Service in place. We need to spend the next five years shaping our common policy, our common vision and our common strategy. That is my first task for the next five years – to shape a real common policy.”
Ownership, working together and coordination key
In the Hearing with MEPs, Mrs Mogherini set out the three things that are needed to achieve this goal common policy, our common vision and our common strategy.
“First, I think we need ownership by all of us, in all Member States. We need to build our common vision together from the very beginning.”
“Second, we need to work together. I will be happy if, five years from now, there is no ‘us’ and ‘them’ when the European institutions refer to each other, and there is just ‘us, the European Union’ – that being the Commission, the EEAS, the Council and the European Parliament.”
“Third, we need to coordinate all actions and all policies that have an external impact – with the external relations Commissioners but also with others because there is no single portfolio that potentially has no impact on our external policies and actions. I would mention here in particular energy, trade, migration, climate, the environment and all the others.”
Italian Foreign Minister and Parliamentarian
Federica Mogherini was Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation since February 2014.
She was elected to the Chamber of Deputies in 2008 and re-elected in 2013. She was a member, and Secretary of the Committee on Defence and member of the Italian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and of the Committee on Foreign Affairs.
On 1 August 2013 she was elected Chair of the Italian Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of NATO. She also coordinated the Inter-Parliamentary Group for Development Cooperation.
She is a member of the Institute for Foreign Affairs (IAI), the Council for the United States and Italy and a fellow of the German Marshall Fund of the United States.
Born in Rome in 1973, she is married and has two daughters. She has a degree in Political Science.