At the last Research Council on 30 October 1995, European Ministers responsible for research reached agreement on the adjustment of the financial allocation for the Fourth Framework Programme for research and technological development and demonstration following the accession of Austria, Finland and Sweden to the European Union. The operating funds for research activities will be raised by 6.7% in line with the contributions already made by these new Member States in 1994. Funds allocated for administrative purposes will be raised by 4%. As a result, the total budget for the Programme will be increased by ECU 800 million. The Council also discussed progress on the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project - a joint US, Russian, Japanese and European initiative. The project is progressing, despite certain difficulties, most notably budgetary problems on the US side. The Council approved the report detailing the specifications of the future construction site. Mrs. Cresson presented the Commission's proposed guidelines on international scientific cooperation. The Commission is seeking to reinforce industrial participation in this context and, where necessary, to use additional instruments to fund RTD projects, such as PHARE, TACIS, Meda or the EDF. The Commission's communication will be discussed by COREPER and CREST before the Council debates it more fully. The Council approved the extension, until the end of 1998, of Community participation in International Association for the promotion of cooperation with scientists from the independent States of the former Soviet Union (INTAS), while stressing the need to strengthen the Commission's role in the association. In the summer, the Commission criticized INTAS for signing so few contracts and transferring such limited funds. Since then, INTAS has taken steps to improve its performance and the Commission is now prepared to continue its participation, provided it has a right of veto at the association's general assembly and over the association's presidency. INTAS will receive funding of between ECU 12 million and ECU 15 million.