After months of political maneuvering and negotiation amongst European Union members, the choices for President and Foreign Affairs Minister (High Representative) have been announced. Prime Minister Herman Von Rompuy of Belgium will become the new President of the organization. A career politician he understands the challenges ahead of him. His new position which begins December 1 will have to tackle a number of issues that require quick resolution - with the economy being a significant priority. His experience (Belgian Central Bank) in the financial markets should be valuable.
The new Foreign Affairs Minister is Catherine Ashton who is currently the EU's Commissioner for Trade. Her new post has a dual role, that of Foreign Affairs Minister and Vice President of the EU. Already some concerns have been expressed about her being elevated to this role. She will have to appear before a review panel of Member European Parliament (MEP)'s before taking up this position.
Neither has had a significant policy experience with the Internet or technology industries directly - though both have extensive involvement in anti-trust cases before the EU involving Microsoft and Oracle. Both posts are the result of the Treaty of Lisbon signed in 2007.