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Volume 33: debated on Tuesday 30 November 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Industry what evidence he has of the extent of use in the textile industry of microelectronics.

A recent privately-researched report indicated that less than one-third of textile firms surveyed and only one-fifth of clothing—and leather—firms had incorporated microelectronic technology into their production processes. These were the lowest percentages of any manufacturing sector. To date, requests from textile and clothing companies for assistance towards the application of microelectronics under the Department's microelectronics application project have accounted for 2·5 per cent. of the total number of requests from all industries, and requests for assistance from textile and clothing firms towards microelectronics consultancy studies represent 5 per cent. of total requests received.In order to improve this situation the Department had held discussions with the relevant trade associations in the industry and is sponsoring a campaign to make clothing and knitwear manufacturers more aware of how they can use microelectronics to improve efficiency.