HL Deb 04 April 1989 vol 505 cc1089-90WA
Lord Williams of Elvel

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether the reply given by Lord Young of Graffham in a supplementary on a starred Question put on 6th March 1989 relating to the Consumer Protection Act 1987 was correct; namely, that, "We know no more than that a press release was issued before last Christmas by the Commission" (Official Report, 6th March; col. 1260); and, if it was not correct, what further information on this matter was available to Her Majesty's Government at that time.

The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (Lord Young of Graffham)

I can confirm that the answer I gave was correct and that there has been no formal approach from the EC Commission to the United Kingdom about the implementation of the EC directive on product liability. We have known for some time of the Commission's concern about the wording of the "development risk defence" and this has been the subject of informal discussions at official level. But the press release was the first statement from the Commission that it was planning to take action against the United Kingdom, Clearly, until the exact terms of its objection have been received no decision can be taken on how best to respond.