B. CASES WHERE EFFECTIVE SCRUTINY HAS NOT BEEN POSSIBLE |
46. ELECTRONIC MEANS OF PAYMENT IN THE SINGLE MARKET (10317/97)
Letter from Lord Tordoff, Chairman of the Committee,
to Helen Liddell MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury
I refer to the above matter and your Department's Explanatory
Memorandum dated 2 December. Two questions arise.
The first concerns the legal base cited for the draft Recommendation
(Article 155 EC Treaty, second indent). This is at first sight
somewhat unusual. I would be grateful for your view on whether
there is any precedent for the Commission using Article 155 as
the sole legal base and whether you are satisfied that it is an
appropriate and sufficient legal base in the present circumstances.
Secondly, I note that the Commission Communication is dated
7 August but was not deposited in Parliament until 2 December.
I understand that you have written to the Chairman of the House
of Commons Select Committee on European Legislation explaining
that the delay arose because of a problem in the transmission
of the document from the Council Secretariat to the Member States.
I am dismayed at the continuing problems being encountered
by Member States in receiving documents from the Council Secretariat
- a matter on which the Select Committee has commented many times.
Once again I would urge you and your colleagues to press the Council
to accelerate its work on the possibility of establishing a system
for the electronic transmission of documents from the Council
Secretariat to Member States.
11 December 1997