§ 17. Mr. St. John-Stevas
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what steps he now proposes to take following the recent meeting of the Western European Union to facilitate Great Britain's entry into the European Economic Community.
§ 27. Mr. Fletcher-Cooke
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what assurances he obtained in his discussions with the French Foreign Minister concerning the terms upon which the French Government would be prepared to lift their veto upon Great Britain's entry into the European Economic Community.
§ 43. Mr. Ridley
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what discussions he had with the French Foreign Secretary on his recent visit with regard to the United Kingdom joining the Common Market.
§ 52. Mr. G. Campbell
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will now make a statement on the 16 progress of the exploratory talks undertaken by the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and other Ministers in his Department concerning the prospects of Great Britain joining the European Economic Community.
§ Mr. M. Stewart
I have nothing to add to the reply which I gave to the hon. Members for Bury St. Edmunds (Mr. Eldon Griffiths) and South Angus (Mr. Bruce-Gardyne) on 11th July and to that given by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister to the hon. Members for Galloway (Mr. Brewis), South Angus, Blackpool, South (Mr. Blaker) and Westbury (Mr. Walters) and to my hon. Friend the Member for Coventry, North (Mr. Edelman) on 12th July.
§ Mr. St. John-Stevas
Will the Foreign Secretary tell the House what steps the Government are taking to follow up Herr Schroeder's initiative, which was taken as a result of the admirable speech made by the Foreign Secretary's colleague, the right hon. Member for Dundee, East (Mr. George Thomson), and to devise a plan for Britain's early entry into the Common Market?
§ Mr. Stewart
We welcome Dr. Schroeder's speech, particularly because it mentioned study of the particular problems which would be involved in British entry. We are ourselves engaged in study of that kind and shall be having consultations with the members of the European Economic Community about them.
§ Mr. Campbell
Despite the efforts of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in his talks in Europe, would not more progress be possible if the Government and the Parliamentary Labour Party did not speak with different voices on this?
§ Mr. Stewart
No, I do not think that is correct. I think we must recognise, first, that it would be desirable for this country to enter the Community but, secondly, that there are certain essentials which must be safeguarded. This matter cannot be over-simplified.
§ Mr. Ridley
Has not the French Prime Minister made it clear that Britain could not change the Common Market agricultural policy? As it is the Foreign Secretary's policy to join the Common Market, does he now accept that?
§ Mr. Stewart
No, I do not think that is true. The French Foreign Minister set out certain alternative ways in which the matter of agricultural policy could be handled.
§ Mr. Hugh Jenkins
Has not this country reason to be grateful, first to President de Gaulle that he kept us out of the Common Market, and now to the French Foreign Minister for doing the same?
§ 33. Mr. Shinwell
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the speech of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster at the Brussels Conference of the Western European Union on the suggestion that Great Britain should enter the Common Market represents the policy of the Government; and if he will cause to be placed in the Library of the House the full contents of that speech.
§ 68. Mr. Blaker
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the speech of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster at the recent conference of Western European Union in Brussels on Great Britain's relations with the European Common Market represents the policy of Her Majesty's Government.
§ Mr. Shinwell
Has my right hon. Friend observed that, when Ministers speak at Western European Union or elsewhere abroad, their speeches seem to go much further than their speeches in this country? Could he use his good offices in order to co-ordinate the oratorical efforts of his colleagues, and will he accept my assurance that I am intensely grateful for the opportunity to read the speech in full?
§ Mr. Stewart
When my right hon. Friend takes that opportunity, he will see that there is not the discrepancy which he fears.
§ Mr. Blaker
If the speech by the Chancellor of the Duchy does represent Government policy, is it not clear that the speech by the Prime Minister in Bristol in March does not represent Government policy?
§ 45. Mr. Bruce-Gardyne
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will make available to hon. Members a copy of the recent report of the London Office of the European Communities on the degree of preparedness of the British economy for membership of the Common Market.
§ Mr. George Thomson
I understand this was a confidential report from the diplomatic mission of the European Coal and Steel Community in London to the agency it represents. The question of its publication is not within the responsibility of Her Majesty's Government.
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that excerpts from the report were published in Le Monde on 5th and 6th June saying that the British economy has been so debilitated after 18 months of Socialism that it might contaminate other members of the Common Market if we were allowed in? Ought he not to get a copy and show it to the First Secretary as well?
§ Mr. Thomson
Both the High Authority of the E.C.S.C. and the E.E.C. Commission published denials on 7th June that the reports in the newspaper to which the hon. Gentleman refers in any way reflected their views.