HC Deb 24 November 1993 vol 233 c445
12. Mr. Booth

To ask the President of the Board of Trade if he will make a statement on the change in the performance of the retail sector since 1992.

The Minister for Energy (Mr. Tim Eggar)

Retail sales figures issued last week for October showed a year-on-year increase of 3.2 per cent. in volume and 5.5 per cent. in value.

Mr. Booth

Putting the vexed issue of Sunday trading on one side for another occasion, what proposals will the Government bring forward to help small shopkeepers by deregulating?

Mr. Eggar

As I am sure my hon. Friend will understand, I cannot prejudge the contents of the deregulation Bill or anything that might be in the Budget statement of my right hon. and learned Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer. However, we are acutely conscious of the need to ensure that the retail sector is truly competitive and we know that there must be a particular emphasis on reducing red tape for smaller businesses, whether in the retail sector or elsewhere.

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