JÁN Figeľ, known primarily for his work as Slovakia’s first representative in the European Commission and now as the chairman of the Christian Democratic Movement (KDH), will serve as a deputy prime minister and as the Minister of Transport, Tourism and Regional Development in the new government.
Figeľ was born on January 20, 1960 in Vranov nad Topľou. He studied at the University of Technology in Kosice, later studied in Washington, D.C. where he specialised in international relations, and then in Brussels where he studied European integration.
In 1990 Figeľ became a member of KDH and in June 1992 was elected an MP for the party. He was KDH’s deputy chairman for international policies and in 1998 – 2002 served as the state secretary at the Foreign Ministry.
In 1993 – 1998 Figeľ represented Slovakia in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. He also served as the main negotiator for Slovakia in the EU accession talks. After Slovakia joined the EU in 2004, Figeľ was chosen to be the country’s first European Commissioner. In the EC he was assigned the agenda of education, training, culture, youth and multilingualism.
In 2009 Figeľ left the Commission and was elected chairman of KDH. In the 2010 election he ran as number one on the KDH candidate list and was elected an MP but chose to leave parliament to serve as minister of the expanded transport ministry.
Jan Figeľ is married with four children.
14. Jul 2010 at 10:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff