HC Deb 12 February 2004 vol 417 cc1652-3W
John Mann

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what preparatory unit has been established for the next UK Presidency of the EU; and what venues have been booked for British Presidency meetings. [154614]

Mr. MacShane

A small team is being set up within the European Union Directorate of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Other Government Departments are establishing their own Presidency units. The Cabinet Office European Secretariat will play an overall policy coordinating role.

During our Presidency we will hold two European Councils in Brussels. Other formal Ministerial Councils and meetings of officials will take place in Brussels and Luxembourg.

Some informal ministerial meetings will take place in the UK during the UK Presidency. Planning for these and other official level events is at an early stage, and neither dates nor venues have yet been finalised.