The U.S. Department of State spent $585,000 on hotel rooms and racked up $322,000 on intra-country transportation costs for Vice President Joe Biden's recent trip to Paris, according to contracting documents that U.S. Trade & Aid Monitor located through routine database research.
Despite the availability of contracting awards granted to Hotel Intercontinental Paris Le Grand and Biribin Limousines, respectively, no other procurement documents currently are available. Consequently, it remains unknown just how much State spent on Biden's European mission, which also included stops in Berlin and London.
According to the White House Blog:
In Paris, French President Francois Hollande hosted a lunch for the Vice President to discuss the French and African mission in Mali and their broader counterterrorism cooperation in the region. The two also exchanged views on Syria, Iran’s nuclear program, the Eurozone, and the U.S.-E.U. economic partnership.
A verbatim transcript of his remarks revealed Biden struggling to explain "on behalf of President Obama how much he looks forward -- how much he looks forward to working with you and France, because there’s not a single issue that affects us on the international -- in the international arena that does not -- where our interests do not intersect. And we look forward to a very, very close relationship between our administrations."
Biden in Munich delivered remarks at the 49th Munich Security Conference, where he:
held a series of bilateral meeting with world leaders. His speech stressed the continued importance the U.S. places on the transatlantic relationship…
In his meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Vice President Biden emphasized the importance of the two countries working together in the interest of international peace and security, including in Syria. The Vice President noted that while the United States and Russia will continue to have serious differences - including, among other things, on human rights and Russia's recent ban on U.S. adoptions - U.S. and Russian leadership is necessary to achieve practical solutions to the challenges facing the world today.
He also met separately with UN and Arab League Joint Special Representative for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, and Moaz al-Khatib, the president of the Syrian Opposition Council, to discuss bringing about a transition that leads to a peaceful, inclusive and democratic Syria, where the rights of all Syrians are protected.
Then in London, according to the WH Blog:
the Vice President held meetings with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Prime Minister David Cameron and participated in a meeting of the United Kingdom’s National Security Council. The meetings focused on array of economic and foreign policy issues, particularly Afghanistan and Pakistan since the Prime Minister had just hosted a UK/Pakistan/Afghanistan summit a few days before the Vice President arrived in London.
Contract award #SFR63013D0004.
Contract award #SFR63013D0003