Select Committee on European Scrutiny Sixth Report




Draft Council Decision on increasing cooperation between EU Member States with regard to disqualifications.

Legal base:Articles 31(a) and 34 (2)(c) EU; unanimity; consultation
Department:Home Office
Basis of consideration:Minister's letter of 11 December 2002
Previous Committee Report:HC 63-i (2002-03), paragraph 6 (20 November 2002)
To be discussed in Council:No date set
Committee's assessment:Legally and politically important
Committee's decision:Not cleared


  4.1  On 20 November we considered a revised version of this measure, which seeks to establish a network of national contact points in Member States to exchange information on disqualifications restricting a person's access to employment. We noted the Government's remaining concerns about the measure, but held the document under scrutiny pending the Minster's reply to our question as to the extent of the Government's opposition to the proposal.

The Minister's reply

  4.2  In his letter of 11 December 2002 the Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Home Office (Mr Bob Ainsworth) replies as follows:

"Following further discussions on the draft Decision, I can now inform the Committee that the Presidency has decided not to take forward the instrument in its present form. It has instead agreed to review its proposed approach in the light of the information on disqualifications which it has gathered from Member States and will [in] due course produce a revised instrument for consideration.

"We welcome the Presidency's decision and will give careful consideration to any revised instrument for improving co-operation on disqualifications. We will also continue to support the approach agreed in the programme of Measures on Mutual Recognition. In this context, we understand that disqualifications are likely to form part of the Commission's programme of work next year, with the aim of submitting a non-legislative communication on disqualifications generally towards the end of next year."


  4.3  We thank the Minister for his reply and agree with the Government's approach. We hold the document under scrutiny pending deposit of any revised measure together with an Explanatory Memorandum.

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