Jean-Claude Juncker’s 25,000 euro ‘air taxi’ revealed

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European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker forth 25,000 euros (£22,600) on a private plane to take a nine-person delegation to Rome, campaigners compel ought to discovered.

The use of the “air taxi” was among almost €500,000 (£451,000) in EU commissioners’ transport and inn bills during January and February 2016.

They were unearthed by Spanish-based Access Info and Belgian armoury Knack.

The Commission said the spending was within the EU’s rules.

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It was also scrutinized annually by the European Parliament, a spokeswoman added.

On Mr Juncker’s tumble from Brussels to Italy, he held meetings with then-Italian PM Matteo Renzi, the Senate president and the president of the niche of deputies, among others.

Commission spokeswoman Mina Andreeva about the private jet was chartered because there was “no viable commercial plane to hand that would fit the president’s agenda” and stressed the 2,927 euro (£2,650) per ourselves cost of the flight.


Analysis

By the BBC’s Adam Fleming in Brussels

If the European Commission dismays the return of the allegation that the EU is a giant gravy train (or a “gravy skate,” maybe), then they did not show it.

Officials mounted a passionate argument of how much the 28 European commissioners spend on travel. It’s their job to advance EU policies abroad! It’s all within the rules! And the European Parliament approves the accounts!

Jean-Claude Juncker’s €25,000 non-public plane to Rome was shared with eight officials who had no other way of put there. And rules specify the maximum that can be claimed for a hotel dwelling. For example, a night in Latvia cannot cost more than €105.

And is the commission in foremost class when it comes to the cost of diplomacy? Vice president Frans Timmermans drained the equivalent of £6,200 on travel in two months. In comparison, separate documents in the UK betray that, say, the Brexit Secretary David Davis spent £10,576 closed a similar period.


She also described flights on “air taxis” as “hard exert oneself”, which includes “reading documents with your files and streak them”, adding: “So I think you will be disappointed as to the travelling experience.”

Entirety the other expenditure detailed, the foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini eject €75,000 (£67,700) on a trip to Azerbaijan and Armenia.

Campaigners have spent not too years trying to obtain detailed information about officials’ expenses, with the commission claiming that collating it poses a big administrative burden.

UKIP MEP Nigel Farage, whose own expenses requirements have come under scrutiny in the past, said Mr Juncker’s use of a privileged plane over a commercial option was “outrageous”.

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