§ Mr. Redmond
asked the Secretary of State for Trade what international conferences and exhibitions are expected to take place in Great Britain in the next two years in connection with trade and exports; which of these will be sponsored or supported by his Department; what will be the estimated cost; and what criteria are used in deciding whether to support them or not.255W
§ Mr. Deakins
Information on forthcoming international conferences and exhibitions in this country is available from the "Exhibitions and Conferences Year Book" published annually by York Publishing Company. a copy of which is in the Library of the House. I understand that 42 of the 152 exhibitions and 19 of the 70 conferences shown in this publication as taking place between now and September 1975 are international events.
My Department disseminates abroad information about those events which are considered to contribute to exports. This information is given in an annual publication "Trade Fairs and Exhibitions in Britain" published in five languages and distributed through our embassies and high commissions.
Where, in order to attract more foreign buyers to these events, the organisers are prepared to increase their expenditure on advertising overseas we are willing to pay up to 50 per cent. of this increased cost. The full cost of this support cannot be precisely estimated but is expected to be substantially higher than the approximate £25,000 incurred in the financial year 1973–74. Apart from these arrangements my Department has no scheme to sponsor or support international exhibitions or conferences in the United Kingdom. Substantial assistance is of course given under the British Overseas Trade Board's schemes to encourage and assist British firms to go abroad and promote their products in trade fairs overseas.