6 JUNE 1992, Page 28

Wishful thinker

Sir: I am surprised that Noel Malcolm (Let- ters, 23 May) was unable to find an accu- rate copy of the text of the Maastricht Treaty on which to base his analysis. From the moment the Treaty was agreed in the earlyhours of the morning of 11 December to the day earlier this month when the Treaty was laid before the new Parliament dozens of interested callers have tele- phoned the Foreign Office for copies of the text. These have been freely provided. Fail- ing that, he might have consulted his MP. Over a thousand copies of the Treaty text agreed at Maastricht were deposited in Par- liament between 11 December and its pub- lication by HMSO.

As for the European Court of Justice, I do not disagree that its interpretation of the Community Treaties in the past has tended to have an integrationist flavour. I said as much in a speech I made in Bonn recently. But the fact remains that the prin- ciple of subsidiarity is enshrined in the Treaty of Rome by the Maastricht Treaty, which is binding on all EEC institutions. The proof of the pudding will be in the eat- ing, but there is a growing body of opinion within the Community in favour of a more devolved approach and this climate of opin- ion, coupled with a specific text, should spread to the ECJ as well.

That is, of course, a matter of opinion. But since Noel Malcolm's 'reliable Brussels experts' have plainly misled him on matters of fact, I would not myself place much reliance on their opinion either.

Tristan Garel-Jones

Foreign & Commonwealth Office, London SW1