§ Mr. Best
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what efforts he is making in conjunction with his European Economic Community counterparts to remove barriers to the liberalisation of the insurance market throughout Europe; what information he has about the attitudes and proposals of the European Economic Community partners; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Channon
Freedom of establishment and services (that is, cross-frontier business) in respect of reinsurance were agreed in a Council directive in 1964. Barriers to freedom of establishment for direct insurance in the Community were lifted in further directives in 1973 and 1979. Unfortunately no progress has been made on dismantling the barriers to freedom of direct insurance services. Disagreement remains on the proposed directive on non-life insurance services because we want a liberal directive whereas the majority of our Community partners want a restrictive one. In an effort to make progress on freedom of insurance services, the Commission has brought cases in the European Court of Justice against four746W other member states in connection with the 1978 Co-Insurance Directive. We are intervening in support of the Commission.