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Barry Gardiner: Not only I, but the Prime Minister earlier today and my right hon. Friend the Minister for Europe earlier in the debate, have made the position of Her Majesty's Government very clear. In due course we will discuss these matters with our European allies in the Council.

With the UK assuming the presidency of the EU at the end of June, we have a particular responsibility to wait for, and take part in, the debate that will take place up to and beyond the European Council on 16 and 17 June. Underlying the debate are wider issues relating to the economy, globalisation and the speed of technological change: in short, the future direction of Europe.

The last two years have seen huge changes in the European Union. Ten new countries, eight of which only a few years ago were in the former Soviet bloc, are now embracing market liberalisation as part of the EU and its single market. It is easy to underestimate those changes, but Europe now forms the largest single international trading bloc in the world, and has opened up many new markets to business and investors alike.

It is worth remembering that Europe, both as a political and as an economic concept, has rarely stood still. From its origins in the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952 through the treaty of Rome to the UK's admission in 1973 and the Single European Act, it has adapted to change and to economic and political circumstances in order to remain relevant.

Mr. Hendrick: In an EU with 25 members, nearly half of which will hold referendums and probably a quarter of which will want to give their Governments a kicking, how could we possibly expect agreement even on a treaty that was all sweetness and light?

Barry Gardiner: My hon. Friend is right to draw attention to the difference that a community with 25 members makes. Indeed, he has taken up a theme that I was about to adopt myself.

In the run-up to enlargement from 15 to 25 countries, it made sense that we took a step back and looked to overhaul the way in which we do business. The right hon. and learned Member for North-East Fife (Sir Menzies Campbell) made the point that a Union of 25 members was absolutely right to attempt to reappraise decision-making procedures that had been constructed originally for just six. Whereas the treaty rightly sought to remedy that process, it did so for a purpose: simply to ensure that Europe could give the citizens of its member countries the prosperity, security and social justice that they desire in ways that reflect the modern globalised world. So I shall now turn to the substantive issues that arise from the Lisbon agenda: jobs and growth.
8 Jun 2005 : Column 1348

The Opposition motion touches on the important issue of regulation and the need to lift the regulatory burden on business. The House will know that Commissioner Verheugen has pledged to make better regulation his personal trademark. The sixth presidency initiative, which was begun under Ireland and the Netherlands last year, will be carried forward by the UK during our presidency in the second part of this year and makes cutting red tape and reducing the burden on business an EU priority.

The right hon. Member for Wells (Mr. Heathcoat-Amory) poured scorn on the Lisbon agenda and asked—I suspect, rhetorically—what progress had been achieved since the Lisbon agenda was launched. The answer is that, since then, 6 million jobs have been created in the EU; the opening up of EU telecoms has reduced the cost of UK phone calls by approximately 50 per cent., which was alluded to by the hon. Member for Sheffield, Hallam (Mr. Clegg); and the liberalisation of EU energy markets is bringing better prices, choice and better service to consumers in the UK.

With genuine respect, I suggest to the right hon. Member for Wells, who speaks with great authority on these matters, that he must not allow the long way that we still have to go to blind him to the distance travelled, but he is right to focus the House's attention on the leadership role that the UK could play in these matters. That point was echoed by my hon. Friend the Member for Caerphilly (Mr. David), who talked about the opportunity that the UK's presidency afforded the Government.

During our presidency, we will work to build Europe's competitiveness in an increasingly challenging global environment. We will press ahead with the services directive. Services account for 70 per cent. of European gross domestic product and employment, but currently only 20 per cent. of trade between member states. Our aim during the presidency is to work closely with the Commission, the European Parliament and our partners around the Council table to remove the barriers that discourage service providers from establishing in other member states, thus creating the potential for 600,000 new jobs.

We will also aim to catalyse the debate about the key issue of the country of origin—the principle that allows providers to deliver services in other countries in accordance with the regulatory and supervisory frameworks of their home countries. We believe that a fully functioning internal market in services can be achieved without undermining high standards of worker and consumer protection—the two are not mutually exclusive.

The Lisbon agenda was based on three pillars: economic, social and environmental. It should be clear that sustainable growth demands that the three legs of the stool are kept in balance. We will work during our presidency to keep labour markets flexible, focusing on what needs to be done to embed quality of opportunity, alongside high performance in the workplace.

We will continue to defend our opt-out of the 48-hour week under the working time directive. Support for the UK argument is steadily growing. With more and more member states grasping the importance of securing flexible labour markets, what was a blocking minority now seems not a minority but more like 50 per cent. of
8 Jun 2005 : Column 1349
those involved, and the figure is rising. However, let it be clear that we support the directive in guaranteeing workers four weeks' paid holiday, compulsory rest breaks and a day off each week. That is a sensible basis for sustainable growth, along with progressive social policy. Progress on regulation is an essential focus of our presidency.

The hon. Member for Woodspring has shown in the Chamber both today and two days ago all the charisma, charm and diplomacy of a diminutive Doberman pinscher. His remarks about the political dinosaurs at the helm in France and Germany, and the army of Eurocrats whose careers depend on the gravy train, as he called it, were desperately ill judged. They will not win him friends in his party, or respect in Europe—

David Maclean (Penrith and The Border) (Con) rose in his place and claimed to move, That the Question be now put.

Question, That the Question be now put, put and agreed to.

Question put accordingly, That the original words stand part of the Question:—

The House divided: Ayes 186, Noes 331.

Division No. 7
[6.59 pm


Afriyie, Adam
Ainsworth, Peter
Amess, David
Arbuthnot, rh James
Bacon, Richard
Bellingham, Henry
Benyon, Richard
Bercow, John
Beresford, Sir Paul
Binley, Brian
Blunt, Crispin
Bone, Peter
Boswell, Tim
Bottomley, Peter
Brady, Graham
Brazier, Julian
Brokenshire, James
Browning, Mrs. Angela
Burns, Simon
Burrowes, David
Burt, Alistair
Butterfill, Sir John
Cameron, David
Carswell, Douglas
Cash, William
Chope, Christopher
Clappison, James
Clark, Greg
Clarke, rh Kenneth
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey
Conway, Derek
Cox, Geoffrey
Crabb, Stephen
Curry, rh David
Davies, Quentin
Davies, David T.C. (Monmouth)
Davies, Philip
Davis, rh David (Haltemprice and Howden)
Djanogly, Jonathan
Dodds, Nigel
Dorrell, rh Stephen
Dorries, Mrs. Nadine
Duddridge, James
Duncan, Alan
Duncan Smith, rh Iain
Dunne, Philip
Ellwood, Tobias
Evans, Nigel
Evennett, David
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Michael
Field, Mark
Forth, rh Eric
Fox, Dr. Liam
Francois, Mark
Fraser, Christopher
Gale, Roger
Garnier, Edward
Gauke, David
Gibb, Nick
Goodman, Paul
Goodwill, Robert
Gove, Michael
Gray, James
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian
Greening, Justine
Greenway, John
Grieve, Dominic
Gummer, rh John
Hammond, Philip
Hammond, Stephen
Hancock, Mike
Harper, Mark
Hayes, John
Heald, Oliver
Heathcoat-Amory, rh David
Hendry, Charles
Herbert, Nick
Hoban, Mark
Hogg, rh Douglas
Hollobone, Philip
Holloway, Adam
Horam, John
Howard, rh Michael
Howarth, Gerald
Hunt, Jeremy
Hurd, Nick
Jack, rh Michael
Jackson, Stewart
Jenkin, Bernard
Johnson, Boris
Jones, David
Kawczynski, Daniel
Key, Robert
Kirkbride, Julie
Laing, Mrs. Eleanor
Lait, Mrs. Jacqui
Lancaster, Mark
Lansley, Andrew
Leigh, Edward
Letwin, rh Oliver
Lewis, Dr. Julian
Liddell-Grainger, Ian
Lilley, rh Peter
Loughton, Tim
Luff, Peter
Mackay, rh Andrew
Maclean, rh David
Main, Anne
Malins, Humfrey
Maples, John
Mates, rh Michael
May, rh Mrs. Theresa
McCrea, Rev. William
McIntosh, Miss Anne
McLoughlin, Patrick
Mercer, Patrick
Miller, Maria
Milton, Anne
Moss, Malcolm
Mundell, David
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
O'Brien, Stephen
Osborne, George
Ottaway, Richard
Paice, James
Paterson, Owen
Pelling, Andrew
Penning, Mike
Penrose, John
Pickles, Eric
Pritchard, Mark
Randall, John
Redwood, rh John
Rifkind, rh Sir Malcolm
Robathan, Andrew
Robertson, Hugh
Robertson, Laurence
Robinson, Peter
Robinson, Mrs. Iris
Rosindell, Andrew
Ruffley, David
Russell, Bob
Scott, Lee
Selous, Andrew
Shapps, Grant
Shepherd, Richard
Simmonds, Mark
Simpson, Keith
Simpson, David
Spelman, Mrs. Caroline
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Spring, Richard
Stanley, rh Sir John
Steen, Anthony
Stuart, Graham
Swayne, Desmond
Swire, Hugo
Syms, Robert
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, Ian
Taylor, Dr. Richard
Tredinnick, David
Turner, Andrew
Tyrie, Andrew
Vaizey, Edward
Vara, Shailesh
Viggers, Peter
Villiers, Mrs. Theresa
Wallace, Ben
Walter, Robert
Waterson, Nigel
Watkinson, Angela
Whittingdale, John
Widdecombe, rh Miss Ann
Wiggin, Bill
Willetts, David
Wilshire, David
Wilson, Rob
Winterton, Ann
Winterton, Sir Nicholas
Wright, Jeremy
Yeo, Tim
Young, rh George

Tellers for the Ayes:

Gregory Barker and
Mr. Mark Prisk


Abbott, Ms Diane
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, rh Bob
Alexander, rh Douglas
Allen, Graham
Anderson, David
Anderson, Janet
Armstrong, rh Hilary
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, Ian
Austin, John
Bailey, Adrian
Baird, Vera
Balls, Ed
Banks, Gordon
Barlow, Ms Celia
Barron, rh Kevin
Battle, rh John
Bayley, Hugh
Begg, Miss Anne
Benn, rh Hilary
Benton, Joe
Berry, Roger
Betts, Clive
Blackman, Liz
Blackman-Woods, Dr. Roberta
Blears, rh Hazel
Blizzard, Bob
Blunkett, rh David
Borrow, David
Bradshaw, Ben
Brennan, Kevin
Brown, Russell
Brown, rh Nicholas
Brown, Lyn
Browne, rh Des
Bryant, Chris
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnham, Andy
Butler, Ms Dawn
Byrne, Liam
Cairns, David
Campbell, Ronnie
Campbell, Alan
Caton, Martin
Cawsey, Ian
Challen, Colin
Chapman, Ben
Chaytor, David
Clapham, Michael
Clark, Paul
Clark, Katy
Clarke, rh Tom
Clarke, rh Charles
Clelland, David
Clwyd, rh Ann
Coaker, Vernon
Coffey, Ms Ann
Cohen, Harry
Connarty, Michael
Cook, rh Robin
Cook, Frank
Cooper, Yvette
Cooper, Rosie
Corbyn, Jeremy
Cousins, Jim
Crausby, David
Creagh, Mary
Cruddas, Jon
Cryer, Ann
Cummings, John
Cunningham, Jim
Curtis-Thomas, Claire
Darling, rh Alistair
David, Wayne
Davidson, Ian
Dean, Mrs. Janet
Dhanda, Parmjit
Dismore, Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, rh Frank
Doran, Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, David
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth
Eagle, Maria
Eagle, Angela
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs. Louise
Ennis, Jeff
Etherington, Bill
Farrelly, Paul
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flello, Robert
Flint, Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Barbara
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Foster, Michael (Worcester)
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Gapes, Mike
Gardiner, Barry
George, rh Bruce
Gerrard, Neil
Gibson, Dr. Ian
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Roger
Goggins, Paul
Goodman, Helen
Griffith, Nia
Griffiths, Nigel
Grogan, John
Gwynne, Andrew
Hain, rh Peter
Hall, Mike
Hamilton, Fabian
Hamilton, David
Hancock, Mike
Hanson, David
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harris, Tom
Havard, Dai
Healey, John
Henderson, Doug
Hendrick, Mark
Hepburn, Stephen
Heppell, John
Hesford, Stephen
Hewitt, rh Ms Patricia
Heyes, David
Hill, rh Keith
Hillier, Meg
Hodge, rh Margaret
Hodgson, Mrs. Sharon
Hood, Jimmy
Hoon, rh Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, George
Hoyle, Lindsay
Hughes, rh Beverley
Humble, Mrs. Joan
Hutton, rh John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
Illsley, Eric
Ingram, rh Adam
Irranca-Davies, Huw
Jackson, Glenda
James, Mrs. Sîan
Jenkins, Brian
Johnson, Ms Diana
Johnson, rh Alan
Jones, Dr. Lynne
Jones, Martyn
Jones, Kevan
Jones, Helen
Jowell, rh Tessa
Joyce, Eric
Kaufman, rh Sir Gerald
Keeble, Ms Sally
Keeley, Ms Barbara
Keen, Ann
Keen, Alan
Kelly, rh Ruth
Kemp, Fraser
Kennedy, rh Jane
Khabra, Piara
Khan, Sadiq
Kidney, David
Kilfoyle, Peter
Knight, Jim
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Lammy, David
Law, Peter
Laxton, Bob
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Ivan
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Llwyd, Elfyn
Love, Andrew
Lucas, Ian
MacDougall, John
Mackinlay, Andrew
MacShane, Dr. Denis
Mactaggart, Fiona
Mahmood, Khalid
Malik, Shahid
Mallaber, Judy
Marris, Rob
Marsden, Gordon
Marshall, David
Marshall-Andrews, Robert
Martlew, Eric
McAvoy, rh Thomas
McCabe, Steve
McCafferty, Chris
McCarthy, Kerry
McCarthy-Fry, Sarah
McCartney, rh Ian
McDonagh, Siobhain
McDonnell, John
McFadden, Pat
McFall, rh John
McGovern, Jim
McGuire, Mrs. Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McKenna, Rosemary
McNulty, Tony
Meale, Alan
Merron, Gillian
Michael, rh Alun
Miliband, Edward
Miliband, rh David
Miller, Andrew
Mitchell, Austin
Moffat, Anne
Moffatt, Laura
Mole, Chris
Moon, Mrs Madeleine
Moran, Margaret
Morden, Jessica
Morgan, Julie
Mountford, Kali
Mudie, George
Mullin, Chris
Munn, Meg
Murphy, rh Paul
Murphy, Denis
Naysmith, Dr. Doug
Norris, Dan
O'Brien, Mike
O'Hara, Edward
Olner, Bill
Osborne, Sandra
Owen, Albert
Palmer, Dr. Nick
Pearson, Ian
Plaskitt, James
Pope, Greg
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Ms Bridget
Prentice, Gordon
Prescott, rh John
Price, Adam
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
Purnell, James
Rammell, Bill
Raynsford, rh Nick
Reed, Jamie
Reed, Andy
Riordan, Mrs. Linda
Robertson, John
Rooney, Terry
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Ms Christine
Russell, Bob
Ryan, Joan
Salmond, Alex
Salter, Martin
Seabeck, Alison
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Barry
Sheridan, Jim
Short, rh Clare
Simon, Siôn
Simpson, Alan
Singh, Marsha
Skinner, Dennis
Slaughter, Andrew
Smith, Geraldine
Smith, rh Andrew
Smith, rh Jacqui
Smith, Ms Angela, (Sheffield, Hillsborough)
Smith, John
Snelgrove, Anne
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Southworth, Helen
Spellar, rh John
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Stewart, Ian
Stoate, Dr. Howard
Stuart, Ms Gisela
Sutcliffe, Gerry
Tami, Mark
Taylor, David
Taylor, Dari
Thomas, Gareth
Thornberry, Ms Emily
Timms, Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Touhig, Don
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Paul
Turner, Dr. Desmond
Turner, Neil
Twigg, Derek
Vaz, Keith
Vis, Dr. Rudi
Walley, Joan
Waltho, Lynda
Ward, Claire
Wareing, Robert N.
Watson, Tom
Watts, Dave
Weir, Mike
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Wicks, Malcolm
Williams, Hywel
Williams, Betty
Williams, rh Alan
Wills, Michael
Winnick, David
Winterton, Ms Rosie
Wishart, Pete
Wood, Mike
Woodward, Shaun
Woolas, Phil
Wright, Dr. Tony
Wright, Anthony
Wright, Iain
Wright, David
Wyatt, Derek

Tellers for the Noes:

Mr. Frank Roy and
Tony Cunningham

Question accordingly negatived.

8 Jun 2005 : Column 1352

8 Jun 2005 : Column 1353
Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The House divided: Ayes 374, Noes 189.

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