Barroso, José Manuel (1965 - )

José Manuel Barroso, President of the EU Commission (Photo: European Commission)

President of the EU Commission, elected in July 2004 to succeed Romano Prodi. Appointed unanimously by the heads of states for a second period from 2009. Was approved by the European Parliament in September 2009. He is now assembling his new team of Commisisoners in consultation with the 27 prime ministers and the political groups in the European Parliament.

His full team shall be approved by 20 of the 27 prime ministers (or presidents) representing at least 255 of 345 weighted voted in the Council. The new college shall also be approved by an absolute majority of MEPs.

Barroso holds degrees in law and political science, and had been Prime Minister of Portugal since 2002 before he resigned following his nomination as Commission President. Barroso was also vice President of the European People's Party EPP from 1999 until 2002.

He authored a number of publications on political science, international relations and European Union issues, and published several articles on political science and international relations in various Portuguese and international collections, encyclopaedias and academic journals.

Speaking after his approval by the European Parliament, Mr Barroso emphasised his belief in Europe and his strong European convictions. He promised that he would build bridges beyond the old left-right divides and between the pro and anti-EU factions.

José Manuel Barroso was born in Lisbon on 23 March 1956. He is married to Margarida Sousa Uva and has three children. On coming to office he was criticized for accepting a holiday trip from the Greek shipowner and multi-millionaire Yiannis Latsis. One of his first actions in office was the publishing of 3000 hitherto secret workgroups.