EUROPE – ECONOMIC AND MONETARY UNION – 4 March 1999

Dr Julian Lewis: If he [the Chancellor of the Exchequer] will list the constitutional issues which he assessed as not creating a bar to United Kingdom membership of the single currency?

[SUPPLEMENTARY:] Is it not clear that the Minister [Patricia Hewitt] has just dodged the whole point of the question? It was not about the pooling of economic sovereignty, but about the loss of democratic sovereignty and democratic accountability. Given that Continental politicians have repeatedly admitted that one of the main purposes of economic and monetary union is to create a political entity – a single state – in Europe, will the Minister now confirm the logical implication of the Government's position, which is that, if the five economic – and they are only economic – tests are fulfilled, there is no amount of loss of political and democratic sovereignty that they would not be content to put up with?