HC Deb 18 December 1995 vol 268 c996W
Mrs. Roche

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what has been the outcome of his Department's review of measures taken to facilitate small firms access to appropriate areas of Government procurement in light of best practice. [6659]

Mr. Hague

My Department is revising its standard tender documentation so that small and medium businesses can identify themselves as such when responding, and has forwarded updated information about contact points for the DTI booklet "Tendering for Government contracts". Written guidance to all departmental staff engaged in procurement includes material specific to the implications of buying from small and medium enterprises. In addition, these staff refer to the DTI publication "Think big, buy small", "Tendering for Government Contracts" and "Your guide to help for small firms". The name of a contact is included in all standard tender documentation.

My Department also liaises regularly with organisations responsible for the provision of business support services. It has strategic responsibility for the business connect service, through which a variety of those organisations will deliver their services to small and medium-sized companies. Business connect is due to be launched in the new year.