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Man-Made Fibres

Volume 978: debated on Thursday 7 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Trade if he will make a statement about the imports of United States of America synthetic textiles.

asked the Secretary of State for Trade what steps he proposes to take to limit the unfair competition from increasing imports of subsidised man-made fibres from the United States of America in view of their adverse effect on the United Kingdom manmade fibre industry in general and Deeside Mill, Flint, in particular.

The United Kingdom Government are today applying to the European Commission under the relevant Community instruments for restriction by quota of imports into the United Kingdom of polyester filament yarn, nylon carpet yarn and tufted carpets of man-made fibres. These restrictions will not apply to countries with which the Community has preferential trading agreements, or bilateral agreements under the multi-fibre arrangement. The Commission is required by the terms of the Community instruments referred to to give a decision on this application within five working days.I had hoped that the GATT article XXIII discussions, which the Foreign Affairs Council on 5 February agreed should be pursued vigorously, would by now have produced a satisfactory solution to the problem as a whole. But, as this has not proved possible, I have no alternative but to take this course.