Former Minister González Laya will preside over a group of EU scholars on the customs union

Former Minister González Laya will preside over a group of EU scholars on the customs union

Arancha González Laya.

The former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya, already has a new position and will take him back to the community capital where he will preside over the new group of wise men created by the European Commission to “identify innovative solutions” with which to modernize the customs union. In particular, this group of experts will advise European institutions and Member States on the preparation of new business models and technological development as well as how to strengthen customs procedures in the face of the digital and green transition.

“The customs union means prosperity, jobs and growth for Europeans. It is an honor that I have been asked to lead the efforts to ensure that it continues to adapt to its objectives in a changing technological and commercial environment, ”said González Laya, who before taking up the portfolio of Spanish diplomacy was executive director of the International Trade Center of the UN, chief of staff of the former director general of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy, and his spokesman in the European Commission when he held the portfolio of Trade Commissioner.

In addition to the former Spanish minister, the group will be made up of eleven other members from politics, business, commerce or the university, chosen independently, respecting the geographical, gender and professional balance, and among whom are the former minister Slovenian finance, Mateja Vranicar, the deputy prime minister of Belgium, Kris Peeters, or the Deputy Director General of Czech Customs, Vendulka Holá, among others. All of them, as he explained, the European Commission have been chosen for their personal capacity, taking into account their experience in the public and private sector, customs, digital trade, risk management, the internationalization of supply chains or international trade law among others.

Nine months

The appointment will last for nine months and will conclude with the presentation of a report, in spring 2022, to the Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Paolo Gentiloni. “To properly prepare the future of the Customs Union, we need new ideas from people with extensive experience and knowledge and who are used to thinking outside the box,” explained the commissioner about a major area for the EU where 900 million euros are produced annually. shipments with a value of almost 4 billion euros that make the club the largest trading bloc on the planet, with 15% of world trade, followed by the United States and China.

The group of scholars chaired by González Laya will be able to organize hearings with experts, will keep the Commission and the Member States regularly informed, and will focus on four major issues: digital commerce, the Risk management, the effective management of the growing variety of non-financial customs tasks and the structure of future governance. The start-up of this team is due to the need to seek solutions to improve the efficiency of a sector that works 24 hours a day, 365 days a year that has seen its workload increase with the departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union.

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