Deputy Executive Director and Incoming Executive Director, International Olive Council; Madrid, Spain

Jaime Lillo López, has worked with the Spanish administration, the EU and international organisations for 25 years, focusing on agriculture, rural development, fisheries and food. He has held the post of deputy executive director of the International Olive Council (IOC) since 1 July 2016 and he has been appointed as the next Executive Director of the International Olive Council starting 1st of January 2024.

At the present, he is responsible for managing the operational units and their activities related to chemistry, standardisation, technical cooperation, the environment, olive sector economics and promotion. During his mandate, he devised the strategy on how to raise awareness of the IOC among non-member countries to gain new members and relevant observers. Under his leadership, great progress has been made on harmonising the IOC standards with the international Codex trade standards for olive oil and olive-pomace oil. He relaunched an activity centred on olive oil and health, which led to the creation of the Olive Oil Health Information System. He also kick started a new activity focused on olive oil and sustainability. He has led promotion campaigns in the major consumer countries. From September 2010 to June 2016, he was chief advisor on agriculture, fisheries, and food at the Permanent Representation of Spain to the EU in Brussels. He was spokesperson at the Special Committee on Agriculture and directed the ministry office in Brussels. There, he represented Spain at EU institutions, took part in negotiations relating to agricultural policy and international trade, and acted as an adviser at meetings of EU ministers of agriculture. During his mandate, he implemented negotiation strategies that resulted in deals with other EU members and institutions, on the EU budget, Common Agricultural Policy reform, and policies related to fisheries and food.

In 2006 and 2007, he was appointed to the cabinet of the Minister of Agriculture as an advisor on EU and international affairs. From 2007 to 2010, he was deputy director general of the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, where he coordinated agricultural and rural development policies between the EU and other international partners. In 2004 and 2005, he worked as an official of the European Commission Directorate-General for Agriculture, where he was involved in bilateral and international relations and trade agreements.

He holds a degree in agricultural engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, where he specialised in agricultural economy. He has been an official of the Spanish Corps of Agricultural Engineers since 2001. He has been an official of the European Commission Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development since 2004.