asked the Minister for Industry, Trade, Commerce and Tourism in view of the employment and export potential inherent in a native craft industry based on high quality design and innovation, the measures, if any, his Department intend to take to ensure a co-ordinated approach to the development of the craft industry by State agencies, such as CTT and Bord Fáilte.
Written Answers. - Native Craft Industry.
The Crafts Council of Ireland is the body with primary responsibility for the development of the craft industry. I have already taken measures to ensure a co-ordinated approach to the development of the craft industry by State agencies. In 1983 I gave Deputy Eddie Collins, Minister of State at my Department, special responsibility for the development of the crafts sector, including responsibility for the Crafts Council of Ireland. A central feature of the Minister of State's role is to ensure that the activities of all the State agencies concerned are co-ordinated to ensure maximum development of the craft industry.
Arising from a restructuring of the crafts council's management committee, which allows me to appoint five, including the chairman, of the 15 member management committee, I appointed senior management from the Industrial Development Authority, Córas Tráchtála, Kilkenny Design Workshops and AnCO to the committee. This restructuring of the committee ensures that it is representative of administrators, craft workers and the State agencies which are concerned with the crafts sector. Bord Fáilte, as an elected member, continue to be represented on the committee.
In line with decisions on the craft industry in paragraph 10.18 of the Government's White Paper on Industrial Policy, the crafts council (i) is acting in an advisory capacity to other State agencies involved in the payment of training grants to craft workers; and (ii) is devising proposals for a more co-ordinated approach to the marketing of craft products.