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Charter of Fundamental Rights

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs in which cases the Charter of Fundamental Rights has been cited in the European Court of Justice in the Advocate-General's opinion or the judges' decision. [29768]

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Peter Hain: Providing the full list would incur disproportionate cost.

We are aware of the following cases in the European Court of Justice where the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights has been referred to in the Advocate General's opinion or the judge's decision:

The Opinion, delivered on 8 February 2001, of Advocate General Tizzano: Case C173/99: Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematographic and Theatre Union (BECTU) v. Secretary of State for Trade and Industry.

The Opinion, delivered on 22 March 2001, of Advocate General Jacobs: Case 270/99: Z v. European Parliament.

The Opinion, delivered on 14 June 2001, of Advocate General Jacobs: Case C-377/98: Kingdom of the Netherlands v. European Parliament and the Council of the European Union.

The Opinion, delivered on 10 July 2001, of Advocate General Leger: Case C-353/99 P: Council of the European Union v. Heidi Hautala MEP.

The Opinion, delivered on 20 September 2001, of Advocate General Mischo: Joined Cases C20/00 and C64/00: Booker Agriculture Ltd v. The Scottish Ministers and Hydro Seafood.

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which member state Governments have stated that they (a) wish and (b) do not wish to see the Charter of Fundamental Rights incorporated into European Union law. [29769]

Peter Hain: The European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights was proclaimed as a political declaration at the Nice European Council in December 1999.

At the same time Heads of State or Government agreed to a review of the Charter's status at the next intergovernmental conference in 2004 as to whether, and if so how, the Charter should be integrated into the treaties.

A Convention on the Future of Europe, whose membership includes the representatives of the Heads of State or Government of the member states, and which will hold its inaugural meeting on 28 February 2002, has been convened to prepare the 2004 intergovernmental conference. One of the issues it will consider will be the charter's status.

European Union

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the accession process of the candidate countries for accession to the European Union under the Treaty of Nice; and what plans the Government have to ensure enlargement if the Republic of Ireland does not ratify the treaty. [29767]

Peter Hain: The Government believe that the Treaty of Nice is necessary to make enlargement a success. We understand that the Irish Government are considering how to address the concerns of the Irish people regarding the treaty. In the meantime, as agreed by all EU Governments, including the Irish Government, other member states are proceeding with their ratification processes. The Laeken

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European Council in December 2001 confirmed the EU's determination to complete negotiations with those candidates that are ready by the end of 2002 so that they can join the EU in time to participate in the 2004 European Parliament elections. The UK is fully committed to this goal.

European Council

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the Government's objectives are for the European Council's meeting at Barcelona; and if he will make a statement. [29765]

Peter Hain: At the European Council in Barcelona, Heads of Government will review progress on economic and social reform undertaken as a result of proposals agreed at the Lisbon and Stockholm European Councils. The Government are committed to this reform process, with its strategic aim of making the European Union the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world with full employment by 2010.

The Government's objective for Barcelona is to take stock of progress made, and to focus member states' efforts on making concrete progress on the further reforms necessary. We would particularly like to see progress in the five areas identified by the Spanish presidency as priorities: transport and communication networks; energy; education and training; labour markets; and financial services. We support the Spanish approach and will be working closely with them throughout their presidency.

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in achieving the goals of economic and social reform set out at the European Council's meeting at Lisbon; and if he will make a statement. [29766]

Peter Hain: I refer the hon. Member to the answer the Economic Secretary to the Treasury gave to the right hon. and learned Member for Folkestone and Hythe (Mr. Howard) on 26 November 2001, Official Report, column 640W.

The hon. Member may also be interested to read the recent Communication by the European Commission "The Lisbon Strategy—Making Change Happen". The Government welcome the Commission's Communication, which will feed into discussion at the European Council in Barcelona, 15–16 March. This document is available at www.europa.eu.int/comm/press_room/presspacks/ Barcelona/com_en.pdf.

Gibraltar

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in deciding the methods by which Gibraltarian voters will vote in European parliamentary elections; and if he will make a statement. [29770]

Peter Hain: We are seeking legislative time in order to introduce primary legislation to extend the European parliamentary franchise to Gibraltar. The detail of the legislative and practical arrangements is currently being considered by both HMG and the Government of Gibraltar and consultations between us are already under way.

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HOUSE OF COMMONS

Clocks (Portcullis House)

John Austin: To ask the Chairman of the Accommodation and Works Committee how many clocks have been (a) ordered and (b) supplied for installation in Portcullis House; when the order was placed; when the installation is planned to take place; and if he will make a statement. [28331]

Derek Conway [holding answer 22 January 2002]: No clocks have been ordered or installed in Portcullis House.

When Portcullis House was being planned no provision was made for a master and slave clock system or individual clocks to be provided because the time would be available on other equipment in the offices: the annunciator, telephones and personal computers.

INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

HIV

Mr. Woodward: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what funds her Department made available for educating children and young people in African nations on methods of HIV prevention in (a) 1999, (b) 2000 and (c) 2001. [29329]

Hilary Benn: The information requested is not available as DFID activities in this area usually represent only part of wider projects and as such cannot be separately identified within our statistics.

Tanzania

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of Tanzania's debt has been written off as part of the enhanced HIPC initiative; and what assessment she has made of the effect on annual debt repayments of the purchase of an air traffic control system. [29705]

Hilary Benn: Under the enhanced HIPC initiative, 54 per cent. of Tanzania's debt in real terms was written off. This does not include the full value of Paris Club debt prior to the enhanced HIPC initiative or the additional bilateral relief beyond the enhanced HIPC initiative. Additional relief beyond the enhanced HIPC initiative will reduce Tanzania's debt by a further 9 per cent.

It is difficult to assess the impact of individual projects on Tanzania's overall debt servicing obligations. However we recognise that debt management is a key part of maintaining longer-term debt sustainability. DFID is working closely with the World bank, International Monetary Fund, other development partners and the Government of Tanzania to ensure that such investments, and the resulting impact on annual debt repayments, are fully scrutinised as part of the public expenditure review and debt management processes.

GATS

Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent assessment she

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has made of the effects of GATS—General Agreement on Trade in Services—on developing countries; and if she will make a statement. [29508]

Hilary Benn: It is not yet possible to make a full assessment as so few commitments have been made under the GATS. The Government support on-going assessment of trade in services, as do all WTO members. DFID is funding both the World bank and UNCTAD to help build capacity in developing countries to identify areas of interest to them.


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