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1994 - Mr Major’s Joint Doorstep Interview with Polish Prime Minister

Below is the text of Mr Major’s joint doorstep interview, held with the Polish Prime Minister, Mr Waldemar Pawlak, in Warsaw on Monday 1st August 1994.


PRIME MINISTER:

I was delighted to have the opportunity of discussing a range of matters with the Prime Minister this afternoon. Firstly let me say how pleased I am to be here, it is a very remarkable occasion, this 50th anniversary, and anybody who has studied, even at the most superficial level, the remarkable heroism of Warsaw in 1944 will understand the importance of the occasion, so firstly let me say how pleased I am to be here.

PRIME MINISTER PAWLAK:

[Not interpreted].

PRIME MINISTER:

Let me just add a few words. We did not only discuss the past, of course, though we touched upon it as I indicated a moment ago, we spent a good deal of time discussing the present and the future. As far as the future is concerned we looked at the future prospects of Poland in due course becoming a member of the European Union. The British are very much in favour of widening the Union, we do not believe the European Union is complete as an instrument until it has the EFTAN states as members, until it has the Central and Eastern European countries, prominent amongst them of course Poland, as members as well. So we look forward to the prospect of Poland becoming a member of the European Union and we examined some of the matters that needed to be determined before that could come about. It is clearly a little way ahead but we are anxious to move that forward as speedily as is consistent with Poland being able to undertake the competition necessary when she becomes a member.

Thirdly, we discussed some contemporary matters and in particular trade matters and the development of the mass privatisation programme in Poland. We foresaw a great many business opportunities in a range of areas - oil, gas, predominant but not only that, tobacco and a range of other areas as well - where there was the prospect of joint ventures and an increased investment and trading activity between the United Kingdom and Poland, and we discussed a number of technical matters like that in our brief discussion.

I have invited the Prime Minister to come to the United Kingdom and he will be coming to the United Kingdom in November when we will be able to have much longer discussions on these and other issues and he will also be able to meet a number of other United Kingdom Ministers.

QUESTION:

Prime Minister, can you tell us anything about your talks with vice President Gore this morning, and anything on the exchange of letters between the Chief Secretary and the President of the Board of Trade, do you have any response to the suggestion that reveals a split in your Cabinet?

PRIME MINISTER:

I am accused of that every day and it is usually nonsense, and this is too. I have nothing to say about domestic matters in the UK while I am here, certainly not. I think the difference between examining matters and making decisions is very wide and ought to be understood by everyone.

I had the opportunity with the Vice-President this morning of examining the decisions of the Contact Group and looking at some of the problems that lie ahead in Bosnia. Clearly there is a great deal for us jointly to consider and that consideration will go ahead, so we spent most of our time discussing the future development of events in Bosnia.

QUESTION:

What is your reaction to the German presence at these celebrations when they pointedly were not invited on D-Day?

FOREIGN SECRETARY:

The Germans will be coming to VE Day of course next year, it was decided that that was appropriate and the Germans felt that was appropriate as well, so I can only answer for D-Day and VE Day, I cannot answer for these particular celebrations, that is a matter for the Prime Minister and the President.

QUESTION:

[Not interpreted].

PRIME MINISTER PAWLAK:

[Not interpreted].