HC Deb 21 January 1981 vol 997 cc245-6
4. Mr. McQuarrie

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he has had any discussions with member States of the European Economic Community on the restrictions imposed by the Spanish Government at the border between Spain and Gibraltar.

The Lord Privy Seal (Sir Ian Gilmour)

The Governments of Community countries are kept informed of developments and of our views.

Mr. McQuarrie

I thank my right hon. Friend for that reply. Does he agree that as the Gibraltarians are United Kingdom nationals under the Treaty of Rome restrictions on the border should be clarified before there is any question of the accession of Spain to the Community?

Sir Ian Gilmour

I agree with my hon. Friend. As he knows, the Lisbon agreement reached last April has not been implemented, but we hope that it will be implemented long before Spain joins the Community.

Mr. Denzil Davies

Does the Lord Privy Seal agree that the failure of the Spanish Government to abide by the Lisbon agreement is unacceptable? Should not the Foreign Office use the opportunity of negotiation with the Spanish Government on the EEC to persuade the Spaniards that they must keep the promises made at Lisbon?

Sir Ian Gilmour

Of course we hope that the Lisbon agreement will be implemented before long. We certainly hope that it will be implemented long before the EEC negotiations are completed.

Sir John Langford-Holt

Will my right hon. Friend be specific? Are we to understand that so long as the restrictions are imposed by the Spanish Government the British Government will feel compelled to object to and resist the accession of Spain to the EEC?

Sir Ian Gilmour

On many occasions I have said that the idea of two countries in the EEC with a closęd border is unthinkable. I am sure that it will not come to that.

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