Lorenzo Vella has been appointed as new Head of the European Commission Representation in Valletta. In this function, he will act as the official representative of the European Commission in Malta under the political authority of President Ursula von der Leyen. Moreover Claudia Colla has been appointed as new Head of the Regional Office in Milan, in Italy. The date of effect of their appointments will be determined later.
In a statement, the EC said that Lorenzo Vella, a Maltese national, will draw on his extensive experience of 15 years in European affairs in Brussels and Luxembourg but also in the Maltese public service. In his new position, he will build on his refined diplomatic and representation skills as well as his thorough understanding of key EU policy priorities. He is currently the Permanent Representative of Malta to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.
Prior to that, he was a Deputy Permanent Representative of Malta to the EU in Brussels, representing Malta at COREPER I. From 2012 until 2014, he also worked in the Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (DG EMPL) of the European Commission as a Programme Manager, responsible for the overall monitoring of policy developments in Malta in relation to the priorities and objectives of Europe 2020 Strategy. Prior to that, he worked in the public sector mainly in Malta, complemented by a short experience as a project manager at the European Court of Auditors. He holds two Master’s Degrees in European Politics and Policies from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium and from the Faculty of Economics, Management and Accountancy in University of Malta.
Claudia Colla, an Italian national, will lead the Regional Office in Milan, which is part of the Commission Representation in Italy led by the Head of Representation in Rome. In this capacity, she will rely greatly on her advanced negotiation and representation skills, and her deep knowledge of an array of EU policies. She currently works in the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW) as Team Leader and Head of the EU delegation in the Technical Barriers to Trade Committee of the Word Trade Organisation (WTO). She previously worked in the Directorate-General for Competition (DG COMP) and in the Directorate-General Internal Market and Services (DG MARKT). During these years, she has been responsible for different topics and policies, including State Aid, Intellectual Property Rights and International Trade. Before joining the Commission in 2004, she was a Member of the Cabinet of the Italian Minister for European Affairs. She has been lecturing on International Relations and EU integration at the University of Florence and Bologna. Claudia Colla is a fellow of the Marshall Memorial Fellowships Program and of the United Nations Fellowships Program on Disarmament. She holds a Master Degree in Advanced European Studies at the College of Europe of Bruges, in Diplomatic and International Studies at the University of Bologna, and in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Florence.