Herman Van Rompuy re-elected president of European Council

European Union heads of state or government unanimously re-elected Herman Van Rompuy as president of the European Council for a second term of two and a half years from June 2012 to November 2014.

Van Rompuy (pictured) was also designated president of the Euro Summit for the same term of office.

He is the first full-time president of the European Council following the creation of the post in December 2009 under the Treaty of Lisbon.

He has also chaired Euro summit meetings since March 2010.

In October 2011 Euro area heads of state and government agreed, as part of measures to improve governance of the euro area, to hold Euro summit meetings regularly (at least twice a year).

Van Rompuy’s acceptance speech focused on the impact of the sovereign debt crisis, which he said “shaped the role” he has held since entering office three years ago.

In future he said his first priority “will remain the economy. Our economy is our life-line. Without a strong economic base our social models and welfare states are at risk and we cannot play a role on the world stage.”

He repudiated the view that “this crisis undermines our Union”, commenting: “I see something else around this table: a sense of common responsibility, the political resolve to continue our road together.”

“The euro and the Union are irreversible projects,” Van Rompuy concluded.

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