HC Deb 17 June 1999 vol 333 c206W
28. Mr. MacShane

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on recent developments in the British steel industry. [86525]

Mr. Battle

The UK steel industry remains one the most productive and competitive in the world.

If my hon. Friend's question refers to the recent announcement by British Steel that it intends to merge with the Dutch steel producer, Koninklijke Hoogovens, I should advise him that the proposed merger is likely to be subject to European competition rules. Given the UK's part in any competition investigation, it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.