§ Mr. Lee
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations have been received from the United Kingdom textile and clothing industries about subsidies by the French Government to the VEV group of textile companies; and if he will press the European Commission to investigate subsidies of French textile companies.
§ Mr. Sainsbury
I have received representations about these alleged subsidies from representatives of the industry. The European Commission has been made aware of the United Kingdom's interest in seeing this matter properly investigated.
§ Mr. John Hughes
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when he next plans to meet representatives of the textile and clothing industry to discuss the effect of the recession.
§ Mr. David Porter
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will take steps to improve the 247W speed of action possible by trading standards officers in banning the sale of imported children's clothing which proves on testing to be a fire hazard; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Leigh
Trading standards officers already have powers under section 14 of the Consumer Protection Act 1987 to issue suspension notices immediately prohibiting for up to six months the supply of goods where they have reasonable grounds for suspecting that they contravene any safety provision.
§ Mr. Sainsbury
[holding answer 3 June 1991]: I refer the hon. Member to my reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Pendle (Mr. Lee) on 4 June at column 170. The question of unfair competition is being addressed in the substantive textiles negotiations.