Covid-19: Support for Luxury Textile Sector

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – in the House of Commons on 9th February 2021.

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Photo of John Lamont John Lamont Conservative, Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk

What steps his Department is taking to support the luxury textile sector during the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Amanda Solloway Amanda Solloway Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

My hon. Friend will be aware of the great support that the Government have already given. The Government continue to offer unprecedented support through packages for businesses worth more than £280 billion. That includes loan schemes, grant funding, tax deferrals, the self-employment income scheme and, of course, the coronavirus job retention scheme. All have been designed to be accessible to businesses in most sectors and across the UK.

Photo of John Lamont John Lamont Conservative, Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk

I am grateful for that response. As the Minister will know, the damaging tariffs from the US-EU trade dispute are punishing textile mills in my borders constituency. Textile bosses tell me in no uncertain terms that these tariffs are going to cost us jobs and investment. Will the Minister agree to meet me and representatives from the textile sector in my constituency to discuss opportunities to support them during this difficult time?

Photo of Amanda Solloway Amanda Solloway Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

My hon. Friend has been a huge champion for Scottish textiles, and we are working hard to de-escalate the dispute and get punitive tariffs removed. Either I or the Secretary of State would be very happy to meet him and representatives from the textile sector in his constituency. I know that the Under-Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, my hon. Friend Paul Scully—the Minister for small business—continues to engage with stakeholders from across the retail and consumer goods sector.