The Prime Minister met Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, today in Downing Street for talks about the renegotiation of the UK’s membership of the EU.
The Prime Minister noted the good progress that had been made, as set out in the European Council President’s letter to the leaders of EU member states yesterday.
The Prime Minister explained that he wanted Britain to stay in a reformed EU. He outlined the areas where British people had concerns about the status quo, which needed to be addressed as part of the renegotiation – issues concerning sovereignty, competitiveness, economic governance and migration. Mr Verhofstadt said he wanted to engage on the UK proposals on EU reform in a positive, constructive way, while noting that some areas would be more difficult than others. The Prime Minister said he looked forward to a substantive discussion on all these issues at the December European Council.
The Prime Minister and Mr Verhofstadt also discussed proposals to establish an EU system to share passenger name records on intra-EU flights, which the Prime Minister noted was an important tool in combatting terrorism and serious crime. The Prime Minister said he was pleased that the Council and the Parliament had agreed in principle on a deal and called on the European Parliament to approve the agreement as soon as possible.