§ Mr. Ashdown
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he has any plans to improve the acquisition of reliable statistics on small businesses, with particular regard to their average life expectancy and the main problems confronting them.
§ Mr. Trippier
I have no plans to impose additional form-filling burdens on small businesses, but I am conscious of the need for reliable statistics and am encouraging greater use of both official and commercially collected data. My Department's work on average life-expectancy was published inBritish Business on 12 August and 7 October 1983. Copies were placed in the Library. The problems confronting small businesses are continuously monitored.