§ Mr. Cryer
asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if, pursuant to his reply of 30 June, Official Report, column 58, to the hon. Member for Bradford, South, he will take steps to enable consumers to know when the criminal offence of misleading consumers about the origin of goods has taken place.
§ Mr. Maude
I have no plans to do so. However, as my predecessor indicated on 13 May during the passage of the Consumer Protection Act 1987, we believe that it will be possible to introduce a successor regime to the 1972 Trade Descriptions Act. This Act, which requires origin marking of imported goods where they are supplied in the United Kingdom bearing a United Kingdom name or mark, has to be repealed for reasons of Community law. We are now considering the terms of a draft order to provide For a successor regime.
The Trade Descriptions Act 1968 already prohibits the application to goods of false or misleading indications in respect of a number of characteristics of goods including their place of manufacture or production. Enforcement of the Act is a matter for local authority trading standards departments.