§ Mr. Goggins
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on attracting inward investment into the United Kingdom. 
§ Mr. Byers
With my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, I can announce that the Invest in Britain Bureau (IBB) has in its Annual Review, published today, reported that 1999–2000 was a record year for attracting inward investment projects to the UK, and the creation of new jobs.
Between 1 April 1999 and 31 March 2000, 757 direct investment projects by foreign owned companies into the UK were reported to the IBB by its partner agencies in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the English Regional Development Agencies. Based on information provided by the companies at the time of the announcement, it is estimated that these projects will create over 52,700 new jobs.
More overseas companies choose to invest here than anywhere in Europe. They do so because the UK is the best place to do business.
In addition, my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has announced today that the Invest In Britain Bureau, the Government's national inward investment marketing organisation, which is a part of British Trade International, will be rebranded 'Invest.UK'.
I am arranging for a copy of Invest.UK's Annual Review to be placed in the House of Commons Library.