The figures, which were mostly obtained via parliamentary questions asked by independent Austrian MEP Martin Ehrehauser, also show that that European Commission president José Manuel Barroso racked up a €28,000 bill during a four-night stay at the New York Peninsula Hotel with eight assistants.
The EC that he runs also blew €300,000 on “cocktail parties” in 2009 alone. One event subsidised by EU taxpayers cost €75,000 and promised guests “state-of-the-art technology, challenging art, combined with trendy cocktails, surprising performances and top DJs”.
The figures will stoke controversy as the EU demands a 4.9 per cent budget increase despite a period of austerity cuts in member states.
Ehrehauser, MEP, said: “It is extremely disappointing to see how easily the Commission spends the EU taxpayers’ money... This makes the gap between citizens and the EU bureaucracy even bigger and deeper.”