The Committee is back in business! This morning the doyen d’age of the Committee, Mr Goke Frerichs (German, Employers’ Group) declared the inaugural session of the fourteenth term of office of the Committee open, and he then dealt with a number of procedural points before the new assembly rose to listen to the European anthem – as so declared by the Committee’s new rules of procedure. A word about Mr Frerichs, a former President of the Committee. He is about to turn 87 but I promise you I had to go fast to keep up with him as we walked up the rue Wiertz to the European Parliament (we are holding the plenary in the Parliament’s chamber). As the doyen d’age he had the right to deliver an address to his fellow members and he chose, quite understandably, to express a heartfelt reminder as to why the European integration process started. He performed his tasks – procedural points, opening address – so well that we told him we look forward to him doing the same job in five years’ time!