HC Deb 25 April 1983 vol 41 c594
13. Mr. Hooley

asked the Minister for Trade how many official trade missions visited the Philippines in 1981 and 1982.

Mr. Peter Rees

In 1981 there were four trade missions assisted by the BOTB under its outward mission scheme, and in 1982 there were two such missions.

Mr. Hooley

In promoting trade with the Philippines, do the Government take account of the disreputable nature of the regime and the gross abuse of human rights there?

Mr. Rees

If this country's exports and trade were restricted to countries that had not been criticised by Amnesty International— a body for which I have the profoundest respect—the prospects for exports, and thus for jobs, especially in Sheffield, would be bleak indeed.

Mr. Dorrell

As the countries of south-east Asia are among the fastest growing in the world, does my hon. and learned Friend agree that if we in Europe wish our economies to recover one of the soundest bases for that would be an increase in exports to that part of the world?

Mr. Rees

My hon. Friend has identified one of the best and fastest growing British export markets. The hon. Member for Sheffield, Heeley (Mr. Hooley) may be encouraged to know that Davy McKee, a company well represented in his constituency, now has a letter of intent to manufacture a steel plant in Iligan. I hope that he and the House will take comfort from that achievement.

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