HC Deb 31 October 1990 vol 178 cc606-7W
65. Mr. Andrew MacKay

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he has any plans to review the net book agreement.

Mr. Redwood

I have no such plans. Under the relevant legislation, the review of arrangements such as the net book agreement (NBA) is a matter for the Restrictive Practices Court, on application by the Director General of Fair Trading.

The Director General considered the case for a fresh application in August 1989. He noted that, since 1962, there had been many changes in the book publishing and retailing trades, but the question he had to consider was whether these changes were of such magnitude as to lead the court to a different conclusion on the effects of ending the NBA. He concluded that there was an insufficiently strong basis to justify him in making an application to the court to reopen the case.