Biography Chronology Home Search Speeches/Statements

1991 - Mr Major’s Joint Doorstep Interview with the Spanish Prime Minister

Below is the text of Mr Major’s joint doorstep interview with the Spanish Prime Minister, Mr Felipe Gonzales, held in London on Tuesday 7th May 1991.


PRIME MINISTER:

Thank you for being here this evening. We have had so far around an hour and a half’s discussion, very friendly, very constructive, there are many matters that we have in common that we wish particularly to deal with. We have spent the time thus far discussing mainstream European matters, the inter-governmental conference on economic and monetary union and political union have dominated the discussions we have had thus far.

Later on this evening we will be continuing discussions when we will have a wide variety of other matters outside mainstream European matters. No doubt at that stage we will be discussing the problems of Gibraltar and also of course the Soviet Union, Iraq and many other matters as well. But this far we have concentrated on the principal matters of concern within the European Community.

I will say no more for the moment but invite the Prime Minister to say whatever he would wish to say.

MR GONZALES:

[Not interpreted].

QUESTION:

[Not interpreted].

PRIME MINISTER:

Could I just add to that? We did discuss cohesion in its widest aspects, that is both cohesion in the sense of the structural funds and cohesion also in the series of both inputs and outtakes from the general Community budget, so we looked at it in a very wide sense indeed.

QUESTION:

Prime Minister, can you tell us anything more about Mr Gorbachev’s possible attendance at the G7 summit?

PRIME MINISTER:

That has not been a subject of discussion with the Prime Minister this afternoon, that is a matter that we will have to discuss with our G7 partners, but I am in no position to make any statement about that yet.

QUESTION:

Has Mr Gonzales given you any further support for your hard Ecu plan?

PRIME MINISTER:

We have discussed economic and monetary union at some length and there are very considerable similarities between the British position and the Spanish position on how to move ahead from where we are now. The British have proposed the Hard Ecu as you know and the Spanish have put forward their own proposal which is similar and which would involve hardening the basket Ecu. So we have neither of us given specific support to the other’s proposal but we are very close together on the principles of how we must go ahead on economic and monetary union.

QUESTION:

[Not interpreted].

MR GONZALES:

[Not interpreted].

PRIME MINISTER:

I agree.

QUESTION:

What reassurances can you give Gibraltarians that nothing will be done against their wishes on sovereignty or on the airport?

PRIME MINISTER:

I think I could only echo what the Prime Minister said a moment or so ago, I think it would not be prudent for either of us to make comments on Gibraltar, either comments we have traditionally made or comments that may follow our discussions until we have had those discussions. That was the position the Prime Minister took a moment ago. I believe it was the correct one and I must answer in the same way.