§ Mr. Austin Mitchell
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many contracts over £92,500 have been let by his Department in the 1988–89 financial year and in the current financial year to date; and how many of these were(a) automatically renewed and (b) open to competition by advertisement throughout the European Community.
§ Mr. Forth
The number of contracts awarded by the Department of Trade and Industry and covered by the provisions of the EC supplies directive, for which the current threshold is £92,000, was 24 in the 1988–89 financial year and 10 in the current financial year to date. Of these five were awarded following advertisement in the EC Journal and 29 were considered to be exempt from advertising and may have been awarded to the previous supplier.