EU's Juncker gives France, Britain key economic jobs [Update]

 Avramopoulos gets immigration portfolio, Schinas named Commission spokesman

France and Britain secured top positions on Wednesday in incoming European Commission President Jean Claude-Juncker's new team, which must tackle a stagnant economy, rising euroskepticism and the Ukraine crisis on its borders.

Former French finance minister Pierre Moscovici was named economic affairs commissioner, the most coveted job in the new regime that will run the European Union for the next five years.

Britain, whose place in the EU is under threat from a surge in euroskepticism at home, scored a coup by winning the financial services post for its nominee Jonathan Hill, the ex-head of Britain's House of Lords.

“I am convinced it will be a winning team,” Juncker told a press conference.

The former Luxembourg prime minister also appointed a team of seven so-called “super commissioners” – many of them from newer Eastern European members – who as vice-presidents will oversee huge areas of policy.

The team takes office in November, provided it wins the approval of the European Parliament.

Juncker's new line-up, which includes four former prime ministers and several former finance ministers, will guide a bloc that covers more than half a billion people and, taken as a whole, is the world's biggest economy.

The European Commission is arguably the most powerful institution in Brussels as it drafts EU legislation, polices national budgets and anti-trust regulations, and negotiates trade treaties.

Germany's Gunther Oettinger was named as digital economy commissioner, while Spain's Miguel Arias Canete got the energy and climate post, a key job with the Ukraine crisis threatening gas supplies from Russia.

Sweden's Cecilia Malmstroem gets...

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