Intergovernmental Conference

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs – in the House of Commons at 1:48 pm on 27th November 1996.

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Photo of David Davis David Davis Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) 1:48 pm, 27th November 1996

I thank my hon. Friend for his negotiating advice, but I do not believe that that is the right way to progress the matter. The issue lies at the heart of the IGC. It arose out of the last IGC at Maastricht and it must be dealt with in that context. We have made it clear that there are a number of considerations and conditions to take into account before the European Union can transform itself after the next IGC. We shall not allow it to go forward until the matter is dealt with. That is not an empty gesture: it is a very clear statement of policy, from which we shall not deviate before or after the election.