Michael O’Leary, Peter Sutherland attend Bilderberg conference

Greece, US elections, Iran, Middle East, cybersecurity on agenda at secretive event

Michael O’Leary of Ryanair: businessman is attending the 63rd Bilderberg, which takes  place near the Austrian Tyrol town of Telfs, 40km down the road from where the G7 meeting took place. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Michael O’Leary of Ryanair: businessman is attending the 63rd Bilderberg, which takes place near the Austrian Tyrol town of Telfs, 40km down the road from where the G7 meeting took place. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

 

Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary and Peter Sutherland, chairman of Goldman Sachs International, will fly the flag for Ireland at this year’s Bilderberg, which commences today.

Founded by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands in 1954 to, in its own words, foster transatlantic dialogue, Bilderberg’s exclusion of reporting press has seen the three-day annual meeting take a spot in the modern conspiracy spectrum equidistant between the Freemasons and the Illuminati.

This year’s significant facts: the 63rd Bilderberg is taking place near the Austrian Tyrol town of Telfs, 40km down the road from where the G7 meeting took place.

This year’s high-profile guests include Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem, Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte and British chancellor, George Osborne.

The topics on the agenda include Greece, the US elections, Iran and the Middle East, as well as the opportunities and challenges posted by artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and terrorism.

Often referred to as secretive, Bilderberg has its own website and publishes a list of attendees. No media representatives are present except invited guests such as the Economist’s new editor Zanny Minton Beddoes and Martin Wolf of the Financial Times.

The sessions take place under Chatham House rules, designed to encourage openness of comment while protecting the identity of commenters.