HC Deb 02 April 1973 vol 854 cc21-2
17. Sir B. Rhys Williams

asked the Minister for the Civil Service if the arrangements made by the Civil Service College for special training for British civil servants concerned with EEC matters are sufficient to meet the needs of Departments.

Mr. Kenneth Baker

In the current year there are 12 courses on general EEC matters at the Civil Service College, attended by over 400 civil servants, and a further seven courses on specialist matters, attended by over 200.

In addition to this, by the end of the year we will have arranged for seven courses of British civil servants to go to France and we will have received three groups of French civil servants in this country. Three groups will have gone to Germany and we will have received two groups of German civil servants.

Sir B. Rhys Williams

Is my hon. Friend satisfied with the facilities for training civil servants in the affairs of the smaller Community countries, particularly Holland and Denmark?

Mr. Baker

At present I am not entirely satisfied with the arrangements for the other countries in the Common Market. We are arranging, in the course of this year, further exchanges, particularly with Holland, Italy and Denmark— that is, courses going from those countries to here and back again.

Mr. Selwyn Gummer

Will my hon. Friend see that those civil servants in our immigration services who deal with EEC nationals entering this country are also given courses, so that we can get rid of our present reputation for being one of the rudest countries that visitors can enter?

Mr. Baker

I have not heard that criticism before about the conduct of our immigration officers. If my hon. Friend has any evidence that they are being discourteous or over-official I shall be pleased to examine it.