Centeno replies to rumours about the future at Eurogroup

  • Lusa
  • 8 May 2020

Mário Centeno will announce "in due course" the decision on candidacy for a second term as president of the Eurogroup.

Finance Minister Mário Centeno will announce “in due course” the decision on a possible candidacy for a second term as president of the Eurogroup, and is now focusing on the response to the crisis of Covid-19, his spokesman indicated on Friday.

Without commenting expressly on a report in today’s Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that Centeno will not be running for a second term as president of the forum of eurozone finance ministers, allegedly due to fatigue caused by the excessive workload also resulting from the accumulation of portfolios, the Eurogroup president’s spokesman recalled that the current term of office only ends on July 13 and pointed out that a decision should only be announced closer to that date.

Recalling that “the decision of the Eurogroup to elect its president should be taken at the latest at the July meeting and Centeno will take and communicate his decision on his candidacy for a second term in due time”.

“The President of the Eurogroup is focused on his work which, as everyone will understand, is extremely demanding in these times of crisis,” he added.

The ‘taboo’ surrounding a possible re-appointment of Centeno has led in recent months to speculation as to whether or not he will continue to lead the Eurogroup, revived today by an article in the German newspaper, which, without naming sources, points out that the Portuguese minister has already decided not to serve a second term and that several ministers are dissatisfied with his work at the head of the informal forum of eurozone ministers.

Elected in December 2017, Mário Centeno succeeded the Dutchman Jeroen Dijsselbloem as president of the Eurogroup in January 2018, for a two-and-a-half year term, which thus expires in July.