HC Deb 17 July 1980 vol 988 cc1749-50
16. Mr. Straw

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what are (a) the principles and (b) the objectives of the common agricultural policy.

Mr. Peter Walker

So far as the Government are concerned, the two are the same, and are the ones set out in article 39 of the Treaty of Rome.

Mr. Straw

Is the Minister aware that the two are not the same? Does he not accept that if he had studied the history of the CAP he would have realised that the principles are distinct from the objectives? The principles were enunciated at the Stresa conference and in a resolution of the Council in 1960. Those principles included market unity—[HON. MEMBERS: "Reading."] I am not reading. As the police say, I am just refreshing my memory. They included—[HON. MEMBERS: "Reading."]—market unity, Community preference and financial solidarity. Does not the Minister further accept that those principles will place the budget review in a straitjacket, that cannot lead to any fundamental reform of the CAP?

Mr. Walker

I shall leave the hon. Gentleman to look after historic principles, while I look after the future objectives.