Microsoft Extends Olive Branch to the EU

In Europe to meet with European Union (EU) officials about matters unrelated to his company's current antitrust crisis, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates noted that Microsoft was dedicated to cooperating with the EU. The comments come a week after the software giant angered EU antitrust regulators by naming its EU-mandated Windows version as Windows XP Reduced Media Edition, setting off a firestorm of criticism at the company.

Gates says that he will not be meeting with EU antitrust regulators during his trip, which is apparently just fine with them. "Mr. Gates has not requested to meet \[EU antitrust head Neelie\] Kroes and Mrs. Kroes is most certainly not going to request to see him," an EU spokesperson said. Separately, Gates noted that Microsoft will be "very responsive" to EU antitrust concerns.

What Gates is doing while in Europe is meeting with various EU officials to discuss trade topics such as African poverty, China's economy. He made the visit as part of his annual trip to the Davos confab, held last week in Switzerland. Gates is apparently playing no role in the Microsoft's ongoing negotiations over the new name for XP Reduced Media Edition. "\[Gates is here for\] informal meetings, not negotiating meetings," an EU spokesperson said.

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