First minister sets the agenda for European Union consensus

10 Oct 02
Proposals by Scotland's first minister to improve the workings of the European Union have been backed by the body that represents Europe's devolved governments, local authorities and regions.

11 October 2002

The Committee of the Regions (CoR) has unanimously supported Jack McConnell's draft report on how to make the EU more democratic, transparent and efficient.

The first minister suggests that all tiers of government must be consulted on legislation and policy if the EU is to reflect the diversity found within its member states.

The CoR will put McConnell's proposals to the Future of Europe Convention, which is to determine how an enlarged EU will be run in the future.

McConnell's suggested measures include a clear statement of subsidiarity rules to ensure that only appropriate decisions are made at the European level.

He also proposed that the EU carries out consultation with devolved governments as early as possible.

McConnell welcomed the CoR's decision, which was made on October 4. 'Government has to be visible and meaningful to individuals in order that they have a stake in their country's future,' he said. 'The European Union is key to our security and our economic and social wellbeing.

'I have been encouraged today that regional and local leaders across Europe have endorsed these measures.

'The Committee of the Regions is developing a strong voice in the debate about the future of Europe, and I am pleased that I have been able to ensure Scotland's voice has been added to this important discussion.'


Did you enjoy this article?