§ Mr. Latham
asked the Minister for Trade what specific recommendation have been made, or specific action taken, since 9 April 1981, by the overseas project board of the British Overseas Trade Board to assist the construction industry; and whether he envisages further action.
§ Mr. Peter Rees
[pursuant to his reply, 19 July 1982, c. 12]: Following a thorough reappraisal of its activities, the overseas projects board has adopted new working procedures designed to improve its effectiveness in promoting the interests of the project industry, including the construction industry, by contributing to the formulation of Government policy in the overseas projects field and by advising on the deployment of support for export projects both generally and in particular cases.
As part of its restructuring, the board has in the past year set up new working parties to consider and report on key areas of policy such as the aid and trade provision and ECGD services. The board has also been instrumental in reshaping the overseas projects fund into a more selective, but flexible, instrument of support.
In the future the board will continue to provide independent industrial advice to the Government on issues concerning overseas projects, thereby seeking to enhance the performance of the United Kingdom projects industry in its pursuit of major overseas business.