§ Mr. Morgan
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will publish a report on his participation in the European energy charter signing ceremony on 16 and 17 December; what are the United Kingdom's primary objectives in signing the charter; if he will place a copy of the charter and the text of supporting in documents in the Library; and if he will make a statement.243W
§ Mr. Wakeham
I attended the international conference on the European energy charter in the Hague on 16 and 17 December 1991. In addition to signing the charter on behalf of the United Kingdom, I made a short statement welcoming agreement of the charter as a political declaration and looking forward to negotiation of legally binding agreements and protocols to implement the principles and objectives of the charter.
I am pleased that the charter was signed on behalf of 31 European countries, the European Community, nine Soviet republics and the inter-state economic committee of the Soviet Union, and four non-European countries.
The United Kingdom's primary objective throughout the charter process has been to promote more open, non-discriminatory energy markets across Europe and throughout the world, and to assist in the achievement of economic efficiency and environmental benefits, particularly in the countries of eastern Europe and in the Soviet republics.
I will place a copy of the charter and the concluding document of the conference in the Library of the House.