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European Union Summits - Mr Major’s Thoughts

Below is the text of Mr Major’s thoughts on European Union Summits, from his auto-biography (page 521).


SIR JOHN MAJOR:

European Union summits - the European Council - tended to be tense and exhausting ordeals, and often rather undemocratic. I attended nearly twenty in all, and presided over two. They had the odd light moment, but I cannot pretend that I enjoyed them, or the shenanigans and horse-trading that was so often a feature.

Nonetheless, unsatisfactory though the process is, I do have a few fond memories of European Councils. The summit I chaired at Edinburgh in December 1992 produced some of the best results of any European Council since Britain joined the Community, including an excellent budget settlement, retention of our rebate, and the decision to begin enlargement negotiations with Austria, Finland, Norway and Sweden.