Presidential perks: But what of Juncker legacy?

Presidential perks: But what of Juncker legacy?

Let us this week spare a weepy thought for Jean-Claude Juncker, who in November concludes his five-year term as president of the European Commission. 

Ruminating on the trials he has endured on behalf of Europe, he observes that unlike the many heads of national governments he has to meet, he has not had an impressive official residence. 

Even Nato’s secretary-general has one of those in Brussels, he laments. Homeless families across Europe will feel his pain, forced as he has been to live in a €3,250-a-month apartment.

And, of course, running the European Commission entails essential worldwide travel, but — again, unlike other heads of state and governments — he has not had an official EU presidential aircraft. 

The president of the United States has one, he notes. 

Presidential perks: But what of Juncker legacy?

Our government has its jet, France’s president has one, and Britain’s prime ministers flies Royal Air Force. 

The EU president must use commercial flights or air taxis at up to €36,000 a trip. 

But with the rough comes the smooth: the EC president pockets an annual compensation package — comprising salary, and money for accommodation and travel — worth €369,600, and in Juncker’s case there might be a reward in the form of a pension as former prime minister of the tax haven also known as Luxembourg.

Perhaps during his remaining months, we’ll hear more from him about the EU’s achievements — and challenges — and less about the trappings of office.

More on this topic

32 hurt as firefighters battle wildfire in Portugal32 hurt as firefighters battle wildfire in Portugal

Danish police investigate after 100 gravestones vandalisedDanish police investigate after 100 gravestones vandalised

EU probing Amazon over use of retailers’ data to gain edgeEU probing Amazon over use of retailers’ data to gain edge

EU's Vestager set ‘to start Amazon competition probe’ as Ursula von der Leyen talks about US tech firms paying taxEU's Vestager set ‘to start Amazon competition probe’ as Ursula von der Leyen talks about US tech firms paying tax

More in this Section

The first few weeks of a Johnson administration will certainly be a bumpy rideThe first few weeks of a Johnson administration will certainly be a bumpy ride

Boris Johnson lacks character, competence and credibility, say leadership expertsBoris Johnson lacks character, competence and credibility, say leadership experts

We Irish are great at storytelling, because it helped us to surviveWe Irish are great at storytelling, because it helped us to survive

Local authorities handcuffed - Change laws to curb city derelictionLocal authorities handcuffed - Change laws to curb city dereliction


Lifestyle

Pollinators are busy feasting on a tempting selection of flowering plants, says Peter Dowdall.The hedgerows are alive with the sound of insects

Carol O’Callaghan previews Cork Craft Month, when exhibitions, workshops and retail opportunitiesAn insider's guide to Cork Craft Month's exciting exhibitions, shopping opportunities and workshops

With a plethora of culture and content releasing at an incessant rate, finding someone to have that cliched watercooler moment with is getting harder and harder. However, there’s a whole host of pop culture podcasts that do the heavy lifting/watching with you.Trawling through pop culture... so you don’t have to

An exhibition in Skibbereen pays tribute to late photographer Michael Minihane, writes Richard FitzpatrickMichael Minihane has been putting West Cork in the frame for decades

More From The Irish Examiner