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Structural Funds

Volume 167: debated on Wednesday 14 February 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps his Department is taking to encourage British firms to compete for structural funds-related business.

The Government attach considerable importance to British firms competing effectively for structural funds-related business. To that end, my Department has organised two major conferences. These have been supplemented by a number of regional events. The Department also offers an information service to United Kingdom business men interested in pursuing opportunities.The more recent conference on 23 November 1989 was timed to coincide with the publication of the approved spending plans for the less developed regions of the Community. I addressed the conference and referred to the need for industry, Government and our diplomatic staff overseas to work together in order to identify the opportunities available. It is the efforts and enterprise of those in the private sector which will then determine how much of this new business is won by Britain.