As of Thursday, the Law on the Deputy Minister to the President of European Affairs comes into effect, according to a decision of the Council of Ministers. Marilena Raouna, the appointment of whom as Deputy Minister by President Nikos Christodoulides was announced on Tuesday, assumes her duties.
A written statement by Government Spokesperson Konstantinos Letymbiotis, said the Council of Ministers, during its meeting on Thursday chaired by President of the Republic, Nikos Christodoulides, also appointed the members of the Board of Directors of the Single Agency for the Out of Court Settlement of Disputes of Financial Nature.
The law allows for the immediate appointment of a Deputy Minister who will be responsible for making preparations for the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU in 2026, for the period ending 31 July 2026. It also sets out the responsibilities of the Deputy Minister, which are limited by the nature of the Cyprus Presidency and its obligations.
The decision of the Council of Ministers will be published in the Official Gazette of the Republic.
The Spokesperson recalled that Marilena Raouna, until recently the Director of the Diplomatic Office of the President of the Republic, has been appointed Deputy Minister of European Affairs.
The appointment of a Deputy Minister of European Affairs was deemed necessary, said Letymbiotis, as the assumption of the second Cyprus Presidency creates, among other things, firstly, additional specific obligations with regard to the representation of the Republic of Cyprus at the political level in the General Affairs Council, as well as before the European Parliament, and secondly, the need for appropriate preparatory work for the adequate briefing and coordination of the various services of the Republic. Thirdly, it requires holding a series of contacts at political level with representatives of the European Parliament and other EU institutions.
He said that taking into account the experience gained during the first Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2012, the Deputy Minister will have overall political oversight and will be exclusively involved in the preparation and implementation of the Cyprus Presidency.
The responsibilities of the Deputy Minister will include the political supervision of the Secretariat of the Cyprus Presidency of the EU in 2026, political representation in EU institutions and bodies and contacts with these institutions and bodies, as well as the overall supervision, in cooperation and consultation with the Ministers responsible, of the preparation and implementation of the Cyprus Presidency.
In this context, the Minister will be responsible for the coordination of Cyprus’ EU Presidency programme and priorities, the organisation of the meetings that will take place, as well as other organisational issues and the communication strategy, in close cooperation with the Government Spokesperson and the Press and Information Office.
The Deputy Minister will also be present during discussions before the Council of Ministers on matters within her competence and will be responsible for the submission of relevant briefing notes, but will not participate in the decision-making process.
“Our goal is for the six months of the Cyprus Presidency to be an important milestone not only for Cyprus, but also for the EU,” said Letymbiotis.
The establishment of an ambitious, concrete and realistic plan of priorities will contribute to a successful Presidency that will further strengthen the vision of European integration based on the principles and values of our European family, he added.
“Our main ambition is to have a Presidency of hope and potential. Hope and potential for a greater and better Europe,” he remarked.
Letymbiotis also announced that the President appointed the members of the Board of Directors of the Single Agency for the Out of Court Settlement of Disputes of Financial Nature.