Written Answers. - Council of Europe Recommendations.

164.

asked the Minister for External Affairs if he will state, with reference to Recommendation 480 on civil liability for motor accidents which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 26th January, 1967, whether he is now prepared to adhere to this convention or, if he has already signed it, to embark upon the ratification procedure.

I would refer the Deputy to my reply to Questions Nos. 3 and 4 on 6th April, 1967 in which I stated that the question of Ireland's becoming a party to the European Convention on Compulsory Insurance against Civil Liability in respect of Motor Vehicles, referred to in Recommendation No. 480, was under examination at that time. The position on this matter has not changed since that date. On account of certain provisions in the Convention which are not in conformity with the present arrangements in this country for cover for victims of road accidents which exist under legislation and ancillary agreements, it is not possible to say at present when the Convention will be either signed or ratified.

165.

asked the Minister for External Affairs what is the attitude of the Government with regard to Recommendation No. 523 on the report of the 6th session of the European Civil Aviation Conference which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 10th May, 1968; and whether he instructed his Representative in the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to vote in favour of the proposals contained in this recommendation.

The Committee of Ministers' Deputies considered Recommendation No. 523 at their 171st and 172nd meetings and sent the following interim reply with which the Irish Permanent Representative concurred to the Consultative Assembly:—

"The Committee of Ministers has studied Recommendation 523 on the report of the 6th session of the European Civil Aviation Conference and has decided, in response to the Assembly's request, to invite member governments to implement the recommendations adopted at that session and to ratify or approve the international agreement drawn up by ECAC on the procedure for the establishment of tariffs for scheduled air services.

The Committee of Ministers will decide upon the other points in the Recommendation as soon as it has received the opinion which it requested of ECAC on the suggestions in paragraph 2(b) of the Recommendation."

Ireland ratified the international agreement on the procedure for the establishment of tariffs for scheduled air services on 15th March, 1968. The recommendations adopted at the 6th session of ECAC are being given careful consideration at present.

166.

asked the Minister for External Affairs what is the attitude of the Government with regard to Recommendation No. 524 on Council of Europe aid to promote European intermunicipal exchanges which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 10th May, 1968; and whether he instructed his Representative in the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to vote in favour of the proposals contained in this recommendation.

Although the principle of European intermunicipal exchanges is favoured, the present arrangement, whereby a token grant from the General Budget of the Council of Europe is provided as an encouragement towards the development of such exchanges, is preferred for financial and administrative reasons to the proposals contained in Recommendation 524. The Irish Permanent Representative has been instructed accordingly.

167.

asked the Minister for External Affairs what is the attitude of the Government with regard to Recommendation No. 525 on the convening of a European Conference of Ministers responsible for regional planning which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 10th May, 1968; and whether he instructed his Representative in the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to vote in favour of the proposals contained in this recommendation.

The terms of Recommendation No. 525 are generally acceptable to the Government. When the Irish Representative supported the convening of a conference of Ministers responsible for regional planning—within the framework of the Council of Europe—the Recommendation was discussed at the Committee of Ministers' Deputies.

168.

asked the Minister for External Affairs what is the attitude of the Government with regard to Recommendation No. 534 on the activities of the Special Representatives of the Council of Europe for National Refugees and Over-Popula-tion, which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 24th September, 1968; and whether he will instruct his Permanent Representative in the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to vote in favour of the proposals contained in paragraph 11 of this recommendation.

The terms of paragraph 11 of the recommendation referred to by the Deputy are still under examination by Government Departments and it is not possible to say what attitude the Government will take to the recommendation until this examination has been completed.

169.

asked the Minister for External Affairs what is the attitude of the Government with regard to Recommendation No. 538 on aircraft noise abatement which was adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe on 26th September, 1968; and what action will be taken on the proposals contained in paragraph 3 (a) of this recommendation.

The terms of Recommendation No. 538 are generally acceptable and steps have already been initiated to implement any action which from this country's point of view is considered necessary in the matter.