§ Mr. Callaghan
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations he has made recently to the EC regarding regulations on the safety of furniture.
§ Mr. Leigh
The Commission decided to suspend further work on its draft directive on the fire behaviour of upholstered furniture in May last year pending further research into the burning behaviour of upholstery materials and into test methods. We made it clear to the Commission that the United Kingdom will retain its regulations until a regime consistent with the level of protection in the United Kingdom is available under the directive.
Officials from my Department and from the Home Office are participating in discussions with the Commission in drawing up proposals for research.