On 19 July 1957, Peter Thorneycroft, British Chancellor of the Exchequer, presents to the Council of the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) a report in which he lists the various obstacles to the establishment of a free-trade area in Europe.
On 16 October 1957, Christian Calmes, Secretary-General of the Interim Committee for the Common Market and Euratom, writes a letter to René Sergent, Secretary-General of the OEEC, in which he sets out the position of the Six on the negotiations under way for the implementation of a free trade area in Europe.
On 11 April 1958, the Netherlands delegate, Marinus van der Goes van Naters, presents to his colleagues in the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe the main points of his report on the harmonisation of the planned free-trade area developed by the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) together with the European Economic Community (EEC).
On 17 May 1958, the Netherlands daily newspaper Nieuwe Rotterdamse Courant comments on the words of Reginald Maudling, Paymaster General of the United Kingdom, regarding the plan to create a large free trade area.
On 10 October 1958, delegate John Hay presents to his colleagues in the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe his report on the debates relating to the establishment, in Europe, of a free-trade area and on the complementarity of such an area with the European Common Market.
On 17 October 1958, the Council of Ministers of the EEC forwards to the Intergovernmental Committee for the establishment of a free-trade area in Europe a memorandum which analyses the provisions relating to the establishment thereof.
On 7 November 1958, the British Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan, asks the French President, Charles de Gaulle, to reconsider once again France’s position regarding the creation of a single industrial free-trade area in Europe.
On 1 April 1958, in connection with the debates on the establishment of a single free trade area in Europe, British cartoonist David Low illustrates the dilemma facing the United Kingdom: to remain loyal to the Commonwealth or to establish closer relations with continental Europe. The leading figures from each camp try to promote their ideas: Reginald Maudling, HM Paymaster General, and David Eccles, President of the Board of Trade, are in favour of a rapprochement with continental Europe, while Robert Menzies, Australian Prime Minister, John George Diefenbaker, Canadian Prime Minister, and Harold Macmillan, British Prime Minister, emphasise the deep links between Britain and the Commonwealth.
In October 1958, the Action Committee for a United States of Europe drafts a note on future relations between the European Economic Community (EEC) and third countries, in particular the United Kingdom, with a view to the establishment of a free-trade area.
On 15 November 1958, the French President, Charles de Gaulle, explains to the British Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan, why he considers the existence of the Common Market and the obligations that it entails for its Member States to be incompatible with plans for a single industrial free-trade area in Europe.
On 29 November 1958, L’Écho de l’Industrie, the official publication of the Federation of Luxembourg Industrialists (Fedil), speculates on the future of the British proposal for a free trade area in Western Europe.
On 17 December 1958, Maurice Couve de Murville, French Foreign Minister, sends a circular note to French diplomatic posts abroad, regarding the examination, by the OEEC Council of Ministers, of the Maudling Report on the provisional trade regime that the Six envisage applying to third countries.