In addition to the visits of European Commission Neelie Kroes and Minister Zsolt Becsey, the plenary session debated and adopted fourteen opinions. Some of these were big set-piece opinions, such as Franco Chiriaco’s (Employees’ Group, Italy) on the European Commission’s 2009 Report on Competition Policy, or on self-evidently major issues for the Union, such as Petru Sorin Dandea’s (Employees’ Group, Romania) and Krzysztof Pater’s (Various Interests, Poland) opinion responding to the European Commission’s Green Paper on Pensions. Others might seem more technical but are actually of equal significance. Two that caught my eye were, first, an opinion by Michael Smyth (Various Interests Group, UK) on corporate governance in financial institutions and remuneration policies (you got it – bankers’ bonuses!) and an opinion by David Sears (Employers’ Group, UK) on a Regulation for ‘the marketing and use of explosives precursors’. The latter, despite the technical title, is designed to reduce terrorists’ access to widely-used substances and mixtures which, in suitable concentrations can also be used to manaufacture explosives. The reason these two opinions caught my eye was not because they happened to have been drafted by British members but because both rapporteurs are acknowledged experts in their field; Smyth a respected economist, Sears a chemist by training who cut his teeth in the Committee on the REACH Directive. Here were two excellent examples of the Committee’s advisory function at work. Whilst it is impossible to prove empirically the influence of an advisory body, the vigorous nodding from the officials on the Commission’s benches during the debate and adoption of these two opinions spoke for itself.