New Clause 1 — Impact of the European Stability Mechanism on the UK

Part of European Union (Approval of Treaty Amendment Decision) Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 6:00 pm on 10th September 2012.

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Photo of Emma Reynolds Emma Reynolds Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs) 6:00 pm, 10th September 2012

I could not agree more with my hon. Friend. There were some naysayers on the Government Benches who thought the Government were wrong to give a bilateral loan to Ireland, but Opposition Members agreed with the Government, because our economies and financial systems are so closely intertwined. It was therefore incredibly important to make that bilateral loan to Ireland. As I said to my hon. Friend Wayne David, it pleases all hon. Members that Ireland’s economy looks like it is getting back on track. That is important for the Irish people—our neighbours—but, given the close links between our economies, it is also important for people in our country.

Given the Minister’s fantastic charm initiative, we hope the Government are in a better position to influence conditionality on the use of ESM funds, as I have suggested. The Opposition do not believe that harsh conditions would be in our interests or the interests of the member state to which support is given.