COMMONS

Future of the European Union: UK Government policy

28 March 2012

The Foreign Affairs Committee has launched an inquiry into The future of the European Union: UK Government policy. The deadline for submitting written evidence was 22 May 2012:

 The inquiry will concentrate on the following issues:

  • To what extent should the December 2011 European Council and its outcome be seen as a watershed in the UK’s EU policy and place in the Union? 
  • Between now and 2020, what institutional architecture and membership should the UK seek for the EU? Should the UK embrace a formalised two (or more)-tier EU and start to develop ideas for multiple forms of EU membership?
  • What is the relationship between the new ‘fiscal compact’ Treaty and the EU’s acquis? What impact might the conclusion of the ‘fiscal compact’ Treaty have on other aspects of the EU and its policies, such as the EU budget, enlargement, or the Common Foreign and Security Policy?
  • Should the UK Government support the incorporation of the ‘fiscal compact’ Treaty into the EU Treaties? If it should, what demands and safeguards, if any, should it make its condition for doing so?

Committee Chairman Richard Ottaway MP said:

There is a widespread sense that the Eurozone crisis and the December 2011 European Council have raised fundamental questions about the future of the EU and the UK’s place in it. There are people in the Foreign Office thinking hard about these questions, and the Foreign Affairs Committee has already taken some evidence from the Foreign Secretary on them. By conducting an inquiry at this stage, we hope to contribute to public debate by airing some of the options that might be available to UK policy-makers.

Mr Ottaway added that he was starting from the assumption that the UK should and will remain an EU Member.

Inquiry-related questions: Please contact Brigid Fowler, Committee Specialist, on 020 7219 4082 or by email to [email protected].

Media enquiries: Members of the press with enquiries should contact Alex Paterson, Select Committee Media Officer, on 020 7219 1589 or 07917 488488, or by email to [email protected]

Image: iStockphoto

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