Wednesday 24 February 2010
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Turkey: EU Enlargement
[Official Report, 1 February 2010, Vol. 505, c. 36W.]
Letter of correction from Mr. Chris Bryant:
An error has been identified in the written answer given to the hon. Member for West Bromwich, East (Mr. Watson) on 1 February 2010 on accession negotiations with Turkey. The reference in the first paragraph to the number of accession chapters opened by Turkey was incorrect. The original answer stated:
“In December 2009 the EU agreed to open the Environment Chapter of the accession negotiations with Turkey. Turkey has now opened 11 out of 35 accession Chapters.”
The correct answer should have been: (314495)
In December 2009 the EU agreed to open the Environment Chapter of the accession negotiations with Turkey. Turkey has now opened 12 out of 35 accession Chapters, of which one is closed. The European Commission's most recent Progress Report for 2009 on Turkey's EU accession process noted several steps forward, for example in addressing the Kurdish and Armenian questions, a new judicial reform strategy, and improving energy security.
During my hon. Friend the Minister for Europe's visit to Istanbul he reiterated the UK's support for Turkey's EU membership and urged Turkey to continue making the necessary reforms and to abide by its commitments under the Ankara Protocol.
At the same time the report noted that renewed efforts on further reforms were needed and challenged Turkey to step up the pace of their reform programme and proactively contribute to a Cyprus settlement.