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Treaty of Lisbon

Volume 475: debated on Monday 12 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which areas of domestic legislative competence are unaffected by the EU Reform Treaty. (202203)

For the first time the Lisbon Treaty defines the Union’s competences, setting out where the EU can and cannot act. These competences are set out in Article 2(12) of the Treaty of Lisbon (Cm 7294 pages 52-55) presented to Parliament in December 2007. The Treaty explicitly states that competences not conferred on the EU remain with member states.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with European counterparts on the scope of responsibility of the (a) posts and (b) institutions to be established by the Lisbon Treaty; and if he will make a statement. (204729)

[holding answer 9 May 2008]: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has regular contact with all of our EU partners on a variety of issues.

The scope of responsibility of the posts and institutions provided for by the Lisbon treaty is set out in its provisions.

As set out in my letters of 22 April to the chairs of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee and Lords EU Select Committee, technical level discussions to prepare for implementation have begun. While it is only sensible to ensure that the EU is ready to implement the treaty—if all countries have ratified—we have made it clear to, and agreed with, our EU partners that no final decisions can be taken until ratification is confirmed.