NATIONAL OFFICE: The Rise of Multi-Headed Challenges
Monday, 19 August 2019, 5:30pm
GBLT3, Government Buildings, Victoria University, 55 Lambton Quay, Wellington

Speaker: Christian Leffler, Deputy Secretary-General of the European External Action Service

Born in Göteborg in 1955, Mr Leffler obtained a Bachelor's degree in politics and international relations from the LSE. After doctoral studies at the Graduate Institute of International Studies inGenevahe joined the Swedish Foreign Service in 1980. Postings toCairoandPariswere followed by the Political Affairs Department of the Ministry inStockholm. After participating in the accession negotiations and in establishing the new working structures of the Representation in the first year of active Swedish EU membership, he became the first Swedish “Antici,” responsible under the Permanent Representative for policy coordination in the work in the Council of Ministers.

He joined the European Commission in 1996, where he took up the post of Commission “Antici” and Head of the unit in the Secretariat General responsible for the coordination of relations with the Council of Ministers. In 1999, he became the Deputy Head of the Private Office of the Right Honourable Chris Patten, European Commissioner for External Relations. From 2002 until 2007, he was Director in charge of the Middle East andSouth Mediterraneanin the European Commission’s Directorate General for External Relations.

He then spent three years as Head of Cabinet of Mrs Margot Wallström, Commission Vice President for Institutional Relations and Communication. During 2010 Mr Leffler was Deputy Director General of the DG for Development and relations with African, Caribbean and Pacific States, as well as a senior adviser to EU High Representative for CFSP and European Commission Vice-President Catherine Ashton, assisting her in the preparation for the establishment of the new European External Action Service.

From the beginning of 2011 to 2015 he was Managing Director for Americas with the European External Action Service.

Mr Leffler took up his current position on 16 September 2015.