Answer given by Mr Barroso on behalf of the Commission
1. The Vice-President of the Commission responsible for Digital Agenda and the Vice-President of the Commission responsible for Competition attended the last Bilderberg conference in St Moritz, Switzerland.
2. They attended the meeting as participants, on a personal invitation. Members of the Commission attend numerous meetings which provide them with contacts with civil society; however, they remain completely independent in the performance of their duties and neither seek nor take instructions. The Vice-Presidents abovementioned did not represent the Commission at the Conference as the Commission has no link with the Bilderberg conference.
3. The Commissioners' travel expenses were paid by the Commission, as for any mission. According to the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union, the Commission executes the European Union's budget and is submitted to the control of the budgetary discharge's authority of the Court of Auditors.
4. The Commission has been informed that the Vice-President responsible for Digital Agenda participated in sessions on ‘technological innovation in Western economies, connectivity and the diffusion of power and economic and national security in a digital age’ while the Vice-President for Competition’s participation was focused on competition policy, State aid and the euro.
5. Information on the meeting is available on the Bilderberg website: www.bilderbergmeetings.org.
6. Bilderberg is a forum for discussion and exchange of ideas. It does not take decisions.