asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if, in fulfilling paragraph 136 of the White Paper on Membership of the EEC (Cmnd. 6003), he will seek the publication of full and official reports of the meetings of the Council of Ministers, instead of the existing practice of each Minister giving his own version of the proceedings.
:No. United Kingdom Ministers are answerable to Parliament for the decisions which they take in the Council of Ministers but the process of negotiation by which the decisions are reached must remain confidential.A summary of the proceedings in each meeting of the Council of Ministers is published in the Council General Secretariat Press Release, which is normally available in the Library of the House within a few days of each Council Meeting. Individual Ministers are of course free to give their own reports to their
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, relative to paragraph 139 of the White Paper on Membership of the EEC (Cmnd. 6003), when draft Community instruments have been available for public purchase or perusal since January 1973; and by what means the general public have been made aware of -the titles and subjects of such proposals.
:Draft Council instruments are normally published in the EEC Official Journal (C series) which is available from HMSO, in the Communities Information Office in London and in many public libraries. In addition, copies of all draft Council instruments have been available in the House for hon. Members. Government Departments consult trade associations and other groupings as appropriate on the substance of draft legislation, and many proposals are reported in the media.
Since June 1974 the titles of all draft Council instruments have been published in the reports of the Commons Select Committee on European Secondary Legislation as they have been reported on by that Committee. These reports are also available from Her Majesty's Stationery Office.