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European Community (Wool Textile And Clothing Industries)

Volume 981: debated on Monday 17 March 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Industry what progress has been made by his Department and by the European Commission towards improving, and providing comparable production, employment, external trade and internal demand statistics on the wool textile and clothing industries of each European Economic Community member State; whether it is planned that a quarterly statement at the European level will be issued; and if the European Commission has yet issued a consultative document on this matter.

[pursuant to his reply, 13 March 1980]: This Department collects and publishes statistics on the sales of the wool textile and clothing industries based on the 1968 standard industrial classification. Employment figures on the same basis are collected by the Department of Employment. Imports and exports are recorded on the basis of NIMEXE—the nomenclature of goods for the external trade statistics of the Community and statistics of trade between Member states—but they are related to the sales figures to provide estimates of home demand. In addition, production and deliveries figures collected by the Wool Industry Bureau of Statistics, which also provides comparable employment figures, are used to estimate home demand for the individual products of the wool textile industry.This Department co-operates closely with the SOEC—Statistical Office of the European Community—in developing a harmonised system of statistics for manufacturing industries. This is a difficult and lengthy process but some progress has been made.I understand that a study of the feasibility of setting up a textile information system is being undertaken by COMITEXTIL—the European trade association for the textile industry—funded by the European Commission. I am not aware of the existence of a consultative document on this subject; nor that any decision has been taken on the frequency of publication of any information.