Select Committee on European Union Forty-Ninth Report


Letter from the Chairman to Mr Bob Ainsworth MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Home Office

  Sub-Committee E (Law and Institutions) considered the proposals at its meetings on October 16 and 28 respectively. We not that the latest draft has been substantially improved in comparison with the initial Danish proposal. Your subsidiarity concerns, shared by this Committee, have been adequately addressed. We also welcome the enhanced protection of privacy (by the abandonment of the involvement of police authorities in immigration work and the inclusion in Article 5b is of a general data protection clause) and the alignment of certain provisions with the Council Decision of 14 June 2002. The Committee believes that the text would be improved if the definition of offences was aligned with the aforementioned Council Decision and if a reference was made to specific international and EU data protection instruments. We invite you to consider such changes.

  We understand that the measure was subject to a general approach at the Justice and Home Affairs Council on October 14-15. This is how the outcome of discussions at the Council is recorded on the Council's website. We are surprised that no reference is made to this development in your Explanatory Memorandum, which was signed on the second day of the meeting, and that you did not consider it necessary to write to the Committee about this. Is there a reason for this failure or was it simply an oversight? We assume that the text agreed was that set out in Crimorg 68 and that there were no material amendments.

  The Committee decided to clear both documents from scrutiny.

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