On 17 December 2009, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso transmitted to his counterpart at the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek (EPP, Poland), the written answers of the twenty-six candidate commissioners to the questionnaire sent out by MEPs, on 27 November, in preparation for the hearings. Buzek then handed them over to the competent committees for analysis.

This questionnaire consisted of five general questions linked to the qualifications and experience of each of the commissioners, their role as a member of the college, their commitment vis-a-vis the Parliament, the priorities of their portfolio and future initiatives (legislative or other) that they anticipate taking. Answers to this last question are generally the most interesting because they form a sort of statement of beliefs and of the work programme for the coming five years. In his letter to Buzek, Barroso himself details what he intends to achieve in the areas that fall directly under his responsibility, such as the revision of the code of conduct of commissioners, impact studies, the '2020 economic strategy' and services of general interest.

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