Skip to main content

Manufacturing Industry

Volume 177: debated on Monday 23 July 1990

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the reasons for the deterioration in the balance of trade in manufactures since 1985.

[holding answer 18 July 1990]: The balance of trade in manufactures deteriorated because United Kingdom demand for consumer and, especially, investment goods, grew faster than industry's capacity to meet it. The excess was met by imports. But the strong investment growth of the last three years will add to domestic capacity and enable British industry to meet more domestic and foreign demand. Industry has already exploited export opportunities. Indeed, in 1989, exports of manufactures, excluding erratic items, increased by 11 per cent., the fastest annual rate since 1973, and in the latest three months they rose by 14 per cent. Increased capacity, along with tight monetary policy continuing to restrain the growth of domestic demand, will provide the right conditions for an improvement in the balance of trade in manufactures.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment has been made of the reasons for the deterioration in the balance of trade with the United States in manufactures since 1987; and whether he will publish a table showing imports and exports of manufactures less erratics to the United States of America in 1987, 1988, 1989 and this year to date.

[holding answer 18 July 1990]: I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave earlier today about the balance of trade in manufactures as a whole. The information requested is not available. Trade in manufactures including the erratic items is, however, readily available in the House of Commons Library in Business Monitors MA20 (annual data) and MM20 (monthly data), published by the Central Statistical Office.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his estimate of the gross output of manufacturing industry other than food and fuel excluding inter-industry transfers within the sector as defined in 1973, 1979 and the latest available year.

[holding answer 18 July 1990]: Current price information on the gross output of each manufacturing industry is published annually in Business Monitor PA1002, report on the census of production summary volume. Copies of this volume up to 1987, the latest available year, are available from the House of Commons Library.The value of the transfer of goods between industries is not separately identified in the census, but guidance on the sales by manufacturing industries to other sectors can be obtained from the input-output tables for the United Kingdom. These have been published for 1974, 1979 and 1984 and are available in the House of Commons Library.