HC Deb 15 June 1999 vol 333 c88W
Mr. Bercow

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will make a statement on his contribution to the EU meetings at Weimar on cultural and audiovisual issues, in respect of (i) European identity and history, (ii) self-regulation of the media, (iii) the Culture 2000 programme and (iv) the Commission Green Paper on Convergence. [86364]

Mr. Alan Howarth

This was an informal meeting of EU Culture Ministers, with no formal agenda or conclusions. There was a wide-ranging exchange of views on these and other subjects. On the Culture 2000 programme, I indicated the UK's desire to agree a Common Position at the formal Culture/Audiovisual Council on 28 June. That Council will also consider draft conclusions on convergence and self-regulation in the media. I drew attention to a number of features which are common to both, noting in particular that self-regulation can be expected to make an important and complementary contribution to state regulation in the light of future digital media developments. The discussion on European identity and history focused on a presentation from the Spanish writer and former Minister of Culture, Jorge Semprun.

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