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Ireland (Tripartite Conference)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th December 1973.

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8. In the context of its harmonising functions and consultative role, the Council of Ireland would undertake important work relating, for instance, to the impact of EEC membership. As for executive functions, the first step would be to define and agree these in detail. The Conference therefore decided that, in view of the administrative complexities involved, studies would at once be set in hand to identify and, prior to the formal stage of the conference, report on areas of common interest in relation to which a Council of Ireland would take executive decisions, and, in appropriate cases, be responsible for carrying those decisions into effect. In carrying out these studies, and also in determining what should be done by the Council in terms of harmonisation, the objectives to be borne in mind would include the following:

  1. (1) to achieve the best utilisation of scarce skills, expertise and resources;
  2. (2) to avoid, in the interests of economy and efficiency, unnecessary duplication of effort; and
  3. (3) to ensure complementary rather than competitive effort where this is to the advantage of agriculture, commerce and industry.