Three members of the College of Commissioners in Europe self-isolated on Sunday after meeting Portuguese Finance Minister Joao Leao in Lisbon, who later tested positive for coronavirus.
On January 15th, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and a group of Commissioners had an opening meeting with the Portuguese Presidency of the EU Council at the Belem Cultural Center in Lisbon to discuss Portugal’s main priorities during its six-month EU Presidency.
Official pictures on the Commission’s website showed that all participants were wearing a face mask, with the exception of a few pictures showing EU competition boss Margrethe Vestager, Cohesion and Reform Commissioner Elisa Ferreira, Executive Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis and the bloc’s foreign affairs chief. Josep Borrell without being.
“The Portuguese authorities have told us that Finance Minister Joao Leao tested positive for COVID-19 after the College’s visit to the Presidency ended,” the commission said in a statement, Politico reported.
Vestager, Ferreira and Dombrovskis “are considered contact persons” and “will comply with the Belgian quarantine rules from today,” added the statement, while Commission President Ursula von der Leyen “does not meet the criteria for contact persons”.
Leao’s test results were announced more than a day after meeting EU officials. According to a statement from his ministry, the 46-year-old finance minister has shown no symptoms and will continue to work from home during his self-isolation phase.