§ Mr. Purchase
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what further proposals he has to assist small and medium-sized firms in their export efforts.
§ Mr. Needham
My Department, jointly with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, provides a wide range of high quality advice and support to United Kingdom148W exporters, 75 per cent. of our export services are taken by small to medium-sized companies and I plan to increase their awareness and access to these through the establishment of 200 business links throughout England. With DTI support, business links bring together local business support providers—TECs, chambers of commerce, local authorities and local enterprise agencies—in partnerships to meet the needs, including exporting needs, of small and medium sized companies in their area. Additional export help is targetted at small to medium sized companies that are passive or less experienced exporters through 17 export development advisers supported by DTI, based in chambers of commerce throughout the country.