Campbell mingles with world elite at private meeting

BY JONATHAN FOWLIE, VANCOUVER SUN JUNE 8, 2010

Premier Gordon Campbell spent his weekend rubbing shoulders with some of the world’s leading political and business figures at the 58th annual Bilderberg Meeting in Sitges, Spain.

The secretive invitation-only meeting — dubbed by London’s The Independent newspaper as an "annual cabal of the world’s elite" — pulls together top international names to discuss issues such as foreign affairs and the economy.

"We talked about the economy, we talked about trade, we talked about health care and the challenges that health care presents to all economies with the changing demographic," Campbell said Monday, not going into detail about what was discussed.

"We talked about how is it possible to feed the world and what are the barriers that are in the way of us actually accomplishing that goal.

"Everybody is connected now with international trade. Everyone will be affected by what happens with the European currencies and that’s a significant issue everyone is concerned about."

A list posted on the website http://www.bilderbergmeetings.orgshows other attendees at this year’s meeting included Bill Gates, former U.S. treasury secretary Robert Rubin and former U.S. secretary of state Henry Kissinger.

Campbell said: "I think I was probably invited because British Columbia is seen as a province that’s leading Canada — doing a lot of interesting things.

"Our economy is one of the best in the country and has been for a number of years now."

Campbell’s trip was paid for by the provincial government.

jfowlie@vancouversun.com

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