EU Presidency

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 15th May 2008.

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Photo of Mark Francois Mark Francois Shadow Minister (Europe)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent (a) representations he has made to and (b) discussions he has had with (i) other EU member states and (ii) EU institutions on potential candidates for the proposed post of President of the European Council; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Jim Murphy Jim Murphy Minister of State (Europe)

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has regular contact with all of our EU partners and with the EU institutions on a variety of issues.

As set out in my letters of 22 April to the Chairs of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee and Lords EU Select Committee, technical level discussions to prepare for implementation have begun. While it is only sensible to ensure that the EU is ready to implement the treaty—if all countries have ratified—we have made it clear to and agreed with our EU partners that no final decisions can be taken until ratification is confirmed.

Discussions on the identity of the new full-time President of the European Council will take place at the appropriate time. This decision and others will, of course, depend on ratification of the treaty by all 27 member states.

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