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Agricultural Exports

Volume 934: debated on Thursday 30 June 1977

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asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps he is taking to promote the export of British agricultural products; and if he will make a statement.

My Department plays an active part in identifying export opportunities. It keeps in close touch with trade organisations and provides a wide range of technical advice on overseas markets. Officials of my Department participate in the work of the joint economic commissions which have been set up at Government level with a large number of overseas countries. In order to ensure that the scientific and technical knowledge of the Agricultural Development and Advisory Service is fully harnessed to the needs of exports, I have recently appointed an exports technical adviser within the service. Visits abroad by Agriculture Ministers and visits here by Agriculture Ministers of other countries also help to focus attention on the potential for exports. My Department will continue, in co-operation with the Department of Trade and the British Overseas Trade Board and, I hope, with a revivified British Agricultural Export Council, to encourage and assist the development of the agriculture industry's export trade.