Timber Industry

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Industry – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 1st November 1989.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Christopher Gill Mr Christopher Gill , Ludlow 12:00 am, 1st November 1989

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations he has received regarding alleged unfair competition in the timber industry as a result of subsidies to sawmills in Wales.

Photo of Douglas Hogg Douglas Hogg Minister of State (Department of Trade and Industry)

Save for my hon. Friend's letter of 31 August, I am not aware of having received any other representations about unfair competition in the timber industry.

Photo of Mr Christopher Gill Mr Christopher Gill , Ludlow

Does my hon. Friend accept that there is documented evidence that shows that elements of unfair competition have been introduced into industries, notably the timber industry in this case, as a result of decisions made under regional policies? Will he take this opportunity to deprecate those instances of interventionism?

Photo of Douglas Hogg Douglas Hogg Minister of State (Department of Trade and Industry)

I cannot do that as I believe that there are powerful economic and social arguments in favour of our regional policy that I outlined in answer to an earlier question. I recognise that when deciding whether to grant aid in particular cases a number of criteria must be taken into account. One of them is, necessarily, the effect on indigenous industries.