§ Mr. Nicholas Winterton
To ask the President of the Board of Trade (1) what action is currently being taken by the European Commission in order to ensure a free and fair market in electricity throughout the European Community;
(2) what action he is taking to ensure that other European Community electricity generating companies do not benefit from state subsidies or cross subsidies.
§ Mr. Eggar
The European Commission has brought forward proposals designed to open up markets in electricity and natural gas throughout the Community. Discussion on the proposals is continuing. They provide for greater transparency in the operation of EC electricity utilities and should eliminate any state subsidies or cross subsidies from which such utilities or their customers may currently benefit.