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Textile and Clothing Industry

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what has been the annual growth or decline of the United Kingdom textile and clothing industry in each of the last 10 years. [108691]

Dr. Howells: The information for the last 10 years is available in the following table:

Manufacture of textiles and textile products

YearIndex of production 1995 = 100Year-on-year percentage change


Comprises Standard Industrial Classification Subsection DB--Manufacture of textiles and wearing apparel; dressing and dyeing of fur.


Office for National Statistics: Monthly Digest of Statistics, table 7.1.

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Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what steps his Department has taken to ensure that the public sector supports the United Kingdom clothing and textile industry and to make such support easily accessible; [108658]

Mr. Alan Johnson: DTI provides a wide range of support to the UK's textile and clothing industry. The Department's Textile, Clothing and Footwear Unit is currently funding about 25 individual projects addressing aspects of the industry's competitiveness covering areas such as supply chain development, education and training, technical innovation, design and marketing.

Other public bodies provide support for the industry in areas such as assistance for capital investment, vocational training, export promotion and research and development.

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of the effect of Government policies on the long-term performance and profitability of the United Kingdom textile and clothing industry since May 1997; and if he will make a statement. [108662]

Mr. Alan Johnson: The Government's first priority on coming to office was to secure long-term economic stability and put an end to the damaging cycle of boom and bust. The Government understand the concerns of businesses, including the textile and clothing sectors trading with Europe, about the pound. But short-term fixes would be the biggest threat of all to industry, creating the illusion of temporary relief followed by the reality of long-term damage.

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the output was of the United Kingdom textile and clothing industry as a proportion of gross domestic product during 1998-99. [108657]

Mr. Alan Johnson: Value added of the UK textile and clothing industry represented 0.9 per cent. of Gross Domestic Product in 1998, the latest whole year for which data are available.

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Cash Machines (Surcharges)

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what changes to the Link network charging structure require approval by the Office of Fair Trading; [108445]

Dr. Howells: I understand that the current LINK agreement is not registerable under the Restrictive Trade Practices Act 1976.

From 1 March, any changes to the current LINK agreement will fall to be considered by the Director General of Fair Trading under the prohibitions of the Competition Act 1998.

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations he has received from the members of the Link network regarding the possible introduction of surcharges for cash machine withdrawals. [108443]

Dr. Howells: My Department has received representations on this subject from Barclays Bank, the Co-operative Bank, and the Nationwide Building Society.


National Lottery Commission

Mr. Burgon: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans he has to alter the directions he has made to the National Lottery Commission under section 11 of the National Lottery etc. Act 1993, as amended. [109170]

Mr. Chris Smith: I have removed the limit on the number of rollovers for any game forming part of the National Lottery from the National Lottery Commission's current directions. The Commission has a statutory duty to protect the interests of players, and has been directed not to license any game that encourages excessive participation--this direction remains in force. The Commission will determine on a game-by-game basis whether there should be limits on the maximum number of rollovers--and, if so, what the limits should be--in the light of these duties.

I have placed copies of the revised directions in the Libraries of the House.

Millennium Dome

Mr. Fearn: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions his Department has had with the New Millennium Experience Company about ticket sales for the Millennium Dome for the first three months of 2000. [104896]

Janet Anderson: The Shareholder (The Lord Falconer of Thoroton), on behalf of the Government, of the New Millennium Experience Company has regular discussions with NMEC's Chairman and Chief Executive on all matters concerning the Millennium Experience at the Dome, including ticket sales. Lord Falconer is supported in his role as shareholder by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport Millennium Unit, who have also been

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involved in these discussions. I understand it is NMEC's intention to release details of ticket sales for the first month of 2000 very soon.

Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) if he will list the criteria which determine how bonuses for executives of the Millennium Dome are calculated, indicating the extent to which such bonuses vary according to the performance of those individuals from 31 December 1999 onwards; [104531]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: The remuneration policy for the executive directors of NMEC's Board, including the Chief Executive and the Managing Director, are set out in the company's published Annual Reports and Accounts, as are their actual remuneration details for the year to which each set of Accounts refers. Performance bonuses are payable at the end of the individual's contract. No entitlement to the payment of the bonus accrues during the course of the contract. The quantum of any such bonus paid are matters for the Board of NMEC. The Board will take account of all aspects of the performance of the individuals concerned.

Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to his answer of 21 December 1999, Official Report, column 557W, what is the total number of free tickets provided to Dome sponsors. [104602]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: There are no free tickets to sponsors. Tickets available to sponsors are part of the sponsorship contractual terms and are an integral part of the benefits sponsors receive in recognition of their financial support for the project. These arrangements are standard for sponsorships of major events. The number of tickets available to sponsors under these arrangements vary according to the level of contribution made by each sponsor. Since they are part and parcel of the sponsorship contract, details are commercially confidential under the confidentiality clauses applicable to both parties. Tickets available to sponsors under the terms of their contractual arrangements do not count towards NMEC's ticket sales and reservations numbers which stand at over one million to date.

Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what is his policy in respect of (a) the insertion of and (b) the activation of penalty clauses into contracts relating to (i) the construction and (ii) the operation of the Millennium Dome; if contracts have been issued without penalty clauses being so inserted; how many penalty clauses have been activated; how much has been levied in penalties under such clauses; and if he will make a statement. [104530]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: All contractual arrangements for the construction and operation of the Dome are the responsibility of the New Millennium Experience Company. As regards construction contracts, NMEC has followed best industry practice throughout and in all cases has included performance, breach of contract

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and termination provisions. In order to ensure achievement of immovable target dates, NMEC has worked with its contractors to create an environment which has ensured that all key targets were met. As a result none of the construction contracts have been terminated on breach of contract grounds and all issues of performance were resolved through constructive negotiation in a spirit of teamwork. The operation of the Dome is an in-house responsibility and NMEC directly employs the host staff. Contracts with suppliers of goods and services including security, waste management and catering all follow industry best practice and include performance, breach of contract and termination provisions.

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans he has to increase visitor numbers at the Dome. [104436]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: The New Millennium Experience Company is responsible for all aspects of the Dome's operation including visitor numbers. The Government are confident that NMEC will increase visitor numbers as the year moves on. The winter months are always the most difficult for those visitor attractions which remain open through the year and the first months of operation at the Dome were always going to be a challenge both in respect of the industry's normal trends and because inevitable teething problems would need to be addressed.

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will publish the contracts between NMEC and the sponsors of the Dome. [104431]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: The contracts between NMEC and sponsors of the Millennium Experience are subject to confidentiality clauses applicable to both parties. This is normal practice in commercial operations. The Government have, however, placed in the House Libraries on 17 December 1998, NMEC's "Outline Approach to Official Sponsors of the Dome" and on 14 December 1999, NMEC's pamphlet "Sponsor Identity and Branding Related to Zones". NMEC must operate in a commercial way if it is to deliver its objectives for the Millennium Experience and if it is to compete successfully both in the visitor attraction market, and in the event sponsorship market. Its ability to do so will be compromised if every detail of all its operations and all its contractual terms with suppliers and sponsors are published. In order to meet its public accountability responsibilities, NMEC has made available, and will continue to make available when requested, commercially confidential information, to the Culture, Media and Sport Committee of the House. The Government are satisfied that the NMEC's approach in these matters is acceptable given the commercial nature of its operation.

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many guests invited to the Dome for new year's eve did not receive their tickets before 31 December. [104433]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 13 January 2000]: Over 8,000 of the 10,000 or so guests at the Dome Opening Celebration received their tickets before 31 December. Of the 2,000 or so who did not, arrangements were made for them to pick up their tickets either at Charlton or Stratford rail stations depending on

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where they had been advised to go beforehand. Every effort was made to contact, before 31 December, those whose tickets could not be despatched in time. The Shareholder, the Lord Falconer of Thoroton, the NMEC Chief Executive and the Metropolitan police have apologised for the inconvenience caused to guests who experienced delays at Stratford in particular, although the process on the night of picking up tickets was not, of itself, a material cause of delays. The event itself, in terms of the numbers attending, the arrangements for the safety of all guests, and the programme of spectacular entertainment, presented NMEC, the police and the transport operators with unprecedented logistical and security requirements. There were clearly some problems with timely ticket issues for all guests and with arrangements at Stratford in particular--and all guests who came via that satellite have been offered a free visit to the Dome on a day of their choosing. Despite those problems, the majority of people who attended on the night had a thoroughly enjoyable evening entertained by some truly spectacular performances.

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