Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered at on 20 July 2004.

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Photo of Andrew Dismore Andrew Dismore Labour, Hendon

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with Turkey concerning the extension of the Turkey/EU customs agreement to Cyprus; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Denis MacShane Denis MacShane Minister of State (Europe), Foreign & Commonwealth Office

The British Government, through a combination of direct ministerial contact and exchanges between British and Turkish officials in London, Ankara and Brussels, maintains a close dialogue with the Turkish Government on a wide range of issues related to Cyprus. The extension of the EU-Turkey customs union to all those EU member states who joined the EU on 1 May is one such issue. Implementation of the customs union is important to the effective functioning of the single market.

I am glad to say that Turkish Foreign Minister Gul wrote on 10 June to the European Commission saying Turkey would take all measures to ensure functioning of the customs union from 1 May.

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