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Textiles And Clothing

Volume 949: debated on Friday 12 May 1978

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asked the Secretary of State for Industry what discussions he has had with industry Ministers in the EEC on restructing the textile and clothing industry; and if he will make a statement.

There have as yet been no such discussions. The EEC Commission has referred to the need for an industry policy for the Community textile and clothing industry, involving the possibility of restructuring, but so far, except in relation to synthetic fibre production, there has been no detailed indication of what they have in mind.My Department expects to be kept closely in touch in the formulation of any firm proposals.On synthetic fibres, the Commission has asked member States to ban State aids towards the creation of incremental capacity for a two-year period.There have been discussions between the EEC producers and the Commission about the problem of excess capacity, and I understand that the producers are expected to put formal proposals to the Commission very shortly.