§ Mr. Spring
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the Government's position is on Trans-European Transport Networks; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Spellar
On 3 October 2001, the European Commission adopted proposals to amend the guidelines which govern the development of the network. An explanatory memorandum (12597) on the proposals was submitted to Parliament on 2 November 2001. A public consultation exercise was mounted on 17 January and the closing date for responses is 28 February. The Government will determine their formal position on the Commission's proposals in the light of the comments they receive. On 3 January 2002 the Commission adopted a proposal to amend the regulation which lays down general rules for Community financing of the trans-European networks. An explanatory memorandum (15111) on that proposal was submitted to Parliament on 31 January. The memorandum makes clear that the Government support the development of the trans-European network but do not support the Commission's proposal to increase the maximum level of EU support for certain transport projects from 10 per cent. to 20 per cent. of total investment costs.