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UK’s Relationship with the EU

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:36 pm on 2nd February 2016.

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Photo of Kenneth Clarke Kenneth Clarke Conservative, Rushcliffe 12:36 pm, 2nd February 2016

My constituency office has been able to obtain a copy of a letter sent by President Donald Tusk to Members of the European Parliament, which the Leader of the Opposition does not seem to have been able to obtain. It sets out the broad description that my right hon. Friend the Minister for Europe has just given.

Does my right hon. Friend agree that the encouraging progress on issues such as Britain’s possible opt-out in future from ever closer union, the relationship between eurozone members and non-eurozone members, and the ability of national Parliaments to veto proposals from the Commission to member states, are crucial questions that have a big bearing on Britain’s future changed relationship with the European Union? Does he accept that the big issue of how far the British tax and benefits system should be enabled to discriminate against foreigners working alongside British workers in this country—no doubt other member states would be entitled to discriminate against British workers working there—needs to be settled on a satisfactory basis, and then we can get back to the big issue of Britain’s full relationship with the Union and the role Britain wants to play in the modern world?