The Cypriot government is pondering its selection for the next European Union Commissioner to be nominated to serve after June’s European elections, according to news website Politico.

Each national government in the EU has the right to nominate one commissioner to oversee a portfolio in the European Commission. Once nominated, each nominee will be subject to a ratifying vote by the newly elected European parliament.

Politico has listed four names as being “in the mix”: current European Commissioner for Health Stella Kyriakides, who has been in post since 2019, former Finance Minister Harris Georgiades, who served between 2013 and 2019, former Energy Minister George Lakkotrypis, who served between 2013 and 2020, and incumbent Foreign Minister Constantinos Kombos.

Kyriakides seems to be the frontrunner, according to Politico, which said that “as we inch closer to the election, the chances are growing she will secure a second term, as it would be more difficult to balance grumbling from other aspirants.”

In addition, they said it is possible the Cypriot government will hope its nominee will once again be given the health portfolio, while noting that “the Cypriot shipping lobby is pushing for the transport portfolio”, which is currently held by Romania’s Adina Valean.

The next European Commission will be the fifth in which Cyprus has been an EU member and thus been able to nominate a commissioner.

The country’s first European commissioner was Markos Kyprianou, son of late President Spyros Kyprianou, who served as health commissioner from 2004 until 2007 when he was replaced by Androulla Vassiliou, wife of former president George Vassiliou.

Vassiliou remained a commissioner but was given the education brief after the 2009 European elections.

After the 2014 European elections, then President Nicos Anastasiades nominated Christos Stylianides to serve as the Cypriot commissioner. He became the humanitarian aid commissioner, and remained in post until the 2019 European elections, after which Anastasiades nominated Kyriakides. Stylianides is now Greece’s shipping minister.

The next European Commission will be the first which asks 27 member states to nominate a commissioner, following the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union in 2020.

However, the current commission was never made up of more than 27 members, as the British government flatly refused to appoint a commissioner in 2019 when the country was a member state.