HC Deb 09 January 2001 vol 360 cc510-2W
Mr. Mitchell

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list, in order of their inclusion in the draft Treaty of Nice, each proposed Article relating to change in the procedure for taking decisions under qualified majority voting or other requirement, indicating for each (a) the article and treaty to which it applies and (b) the nature of the proposed change. [142415]

Mr. Vaz

At Nice, the Government agreed to extend qualified majority voting in a total of 31 articles of the Treaty establishing the European Community and the Treaty on European Union. All these moves will benefit the UK. As promised, we retained the UK's veto over taxation, social security and the other key issues we identified at the start of the IGC.

Of the articles that moved to majority voting, 11 relate to conditions of appointment or procedural rules. The rest are primarily about the efficiency of economic management and the single market. Where needed, articles have been amended to carve out specific issues or to retain unanimity for key aspects of legislation.

The UK has an opt-in to all aspects of the free movement articles (Articles 62–66 TEC). Two other articles do not apply to us unless we join the single currency (Articles 111(4) and 123(4)).

The full list follows. Those areas marked with an asterisk will also become subject to codecision with the European Parliament.

Articles of the Treaty on European Union

  1. 1.Article 23(2): Appointment of CFSP Special Representatives.
  2. 2. Article 24: Conclusion of international CFSP/JHA agreements where QMV applies internally.

Articles of the EC Treaty

  1. 3. Article 13: Anti-discrimination (incentive measures only, excluding any harmonisation of member states' legislation)*
  2. 4. Article 18: Measures to facilitate rights of Citizens to move freely/reside within EU (passports, identity cards, residence permits, other similar documents, social security and social protection carved-out)
  3. 5. Article 62(2)(a) and (3)*: Procedures for checks at external borders (subject to prior agreement on the scope of application of measures on crossing external borders); and conditions for travel by third country nationals (both delayed until 2004 and subject to confirmation by the Council)
  4. 6. Article 63(1)*, (2)(a)*, 3(b)*: Implementation of common rules on asylum and minimum arrangements for temporary protection for third country nationals (both once basic framework rules have been put in place); measures to combat illegal immigration (from 2004, subject to confirmation by the Council)
  5. 7. Article 65(a)*(b)*(c)*: Civil judicial co-operation (except family law)
  6. 8. Article 66: Measures to encourage administrative co-operation in the free movement Title (from 2004, subject to confirmation by the Council)
  7. 9. Article 100: Measures in the event of severe difficulties in the supply of certain products/Community financial assistance to member states in severe difficulties (plus a declaration stating that any decisions must be compatible with the no bail-out rule in Article 103 TEC and ceilings in this and future Financial Perspectives)
  8. 10. Article 111(4): Representation of the European Community at international level in the EMU sphere. Does not apply to the UK unless we join the single currency.
  9. 11. Article 123(4): Measures for the smooth introduction of the single currency. Does not apply to the UK unless we join the single currency
  10. 12. Article 133: Extension of the Common Commercial Policy to trade in some services and the commercial aspects of intellectual property (subject to unanimity in certain situations)
  11. 512W
  12. 13. Article 137(1)(k)*:The modernisation of social protection systems (excluding any harmonisation of member states' legislation and without prejudice to wider social protection, which remains subject to unanimity)
  13. 14. Article 157(3)*: Industrial policy (subject to a carve-out for measures on taxation and the rights and interests of employed persons)
  14. 15. Article 159(3)*: Specific actions for social/economic cohesion outside the structural funds
  15. 16. Article 161: Structural and Cohesion fund rules (Delayed until 2007, or until agreement on the next Financial Perspective, whichever is the later)
  16. 17. Article 175*: Some environmental measures (aspects of the qualitative management of water resources)
  17. 18. Article 181(a): Financial and technical co-operation with third countries (except for candidate countries and association agreements)
  18. 19. Article 190(5): The MEPs' statue, with unanimity retained for fiscal measures
  19. 20. Article 191(2)*: Statute for European Political parties (subject to a declaration stating that Community funds cannot be used to fund, either directly or indirectly, national political parties)
  20. 21. Article 207(2): Appointment of the Secretary-General and Deputy Secretary-t General of the Council
  21. 22. Article 210: Salaries, allowances and pensions of Members and the Registrar of the Court of First Instance
  22. 23. Article 214/5: Appointment of the President of the Commission and list of members of the Commission (including replacement following their dismissal, resignation or death)
  23. 24. Article 223: Approval of the Rules of Procedure of the Court of Justice
  24. 25. Article 224: Approval of the Rules of Procedure of the Court of First Instance
  25. 26. Article 225a: Approval of the Rules of Procedure of judicial panels attached to the Court of First Instance
  26. 27. Article 247(3): Appointment of the Members of the Court of Auditors
  27. 28. Article 248(4): Approval of the Rules of Procedure of the Court of Auditors
  28. 29. Article 259(1): Appointment of Members of the Economic and Social Committee
  29. 30. Article 263: Appointment of Members of the Committee of the Regions
  30. 31. Article 279(a and c): Financial Regulations/rules concerning the responsibility of financial controllers, authorising officers and account officers and concerning appropriate arrangements for inspection (delayed until 2007).

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