Balkenende is positive on EU debate

17th October 2007, Comments 0 comments

17 October 2007, THE HAGUE – The government is confident that the EU leaders will endorse the legal details of the new reform treaty. "Several minor issues that are left will be resolved," Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said on Wednesday during a debate on Europe in parliament on Wednesday.

17 October 2007

THE HAGUE – The government is confident that the EU leaders will endorse the legal details of the new reform treaty. "Several minor issues that are left will be resolved," Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said on Wednesday during a debate on Europe in parliament on Wednesday.

The government is satisfied with the draft text of the new treaty, which is to replace the rejected European Constitution. Balkenende hopes that the ensuing debate "won’t be an issue."

The informal council of European heads of state and governments will meet in Portugal on Thursday and Friday. If the text is approved the new EU treaty will be ratified in December.

State Secretary for European Affairs, Frans Timmermans promised parliament that the government give a full explanation about what precisely will change under the new treaty with respect to the existing EU treaties. He was however not willing to compare the new reform treaty with the European Constitution that was rejected in 2005. The VVD and the PVV had called for such a comparison to see what exactly had changed.

The government will do "its utmost" to clearly communicate the European Union issue with the Dutch citizens. Timmermans said that he would present a plan to this end. This time the government will primarily emphasise that the new treaty will do justice to objections raised previously by the Dutch population who rejected the European Constitution.

 Earlier the government had decided to not hold a referendum on the reform treaty. This decision was widely supported by a majority in parliament.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP]

Subject: Dutch news

 

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