HL Deb 15 December 1997 vol 584 cc73-4WA
The Earl of Sandwich

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they have made any response to the Communication from the European Commission to the Council of Minsters and the European Parliament on immigration and asylum policies, dated 23 February 1994.

Lord Williams of Mostyn

The Government made no direct response. However, at the Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting on 20 June 1994, the Council of Ministers approved a number of Conclusions relating to the Commission's Communication. Subsequent work programmes in the immigration and asylum field have reflected the subjects covered by the Communication.

The conclusions are:

"The Council:

expresses its gratitude for the Commission Communication, which has the great merit of encompassing the various aspects of immigration and asylum policies;

notes that the various Chapters of the Commission Communication have been discussed by the General Affairs Council, the Social Affairs Council, the Development Council and, in accordance with the procedural decisions taken at its meeting on 23 March 1994, the preparatory bodies of the Justice and Home Affairs Council;

recalls the exchange of views at the informal meeting of the Ministers for Internal Affairs in Thessaloniki on 6 and 7 May 1994;

reiterates the importance it attaches to the action plan and the priority work programme for 1994 which were adopted at the end of 1993;

calls upon the competent bodies to examine, at the time of preparation of a new work programme, the desirability of including in its topics in that Communication which come under Title 1 of the European Union but which are not included in the priority work programme for 1994".