Below is the text of Mr Major’s written Parliamentary Answer on the ECOFIN Council on 13th June 1990.
Mr. Jack To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the outcome of the latest meeting of the European Community’s Economic and Finance Council.
Mr. Major The ECOFIN Council met in Luxembourg on 11 June. The Paymaster General and I represented the United Kingdom. Future progress towards economic and monetary union was discussed and oral reports were heard from the chairmen of the central bank governors, monetary and economic policy committees and from President Delors. The Council agreed that it was important to ensure that stage 1 was successful and that more work was needed in how the Community might progress beyond that stage. It was agreed that Finance Ministers should be involved in the forthcoming intergovernmental conference on EMU. The presidency will submit a progress report to the European Council before its meeting on 25 to 26 June.
Political agreement was reached on a package of three corporate tax measures to encourage cross-border co-operation. When finally implemented, these measures will end the double taxation of subsidiaries which transfer dividends to a parent company in another member state and will remove the tax disincentive to cross border mergers. This is a very welcome step forward and will be of real benefit to British industry.
The Council also welcomed a report from the Commission on the main features of its new proposals for a system of VAT control and for the collection of infra-EC trade statistics after 1992. The raising of travellers’ allowance was also discussed. It was agreed that the Court of Auditors report on export refunds should be submitted to the Committee of Permanent Representatives for urgent further consideration. The investment services directive was also discussed, and it was concluded that the Council should aim to reach a common position on the directive by 31 December 1990.