Action seeks PR help to defuse timebomb

Action 2000, the Department of Trade and Industry body established earlier this month to help the business sector deal with the millennium computer time-bomb issue, will begin hunting for a PR agency following the appointment of a chairman next week.

Action 2000, the Department of Trade and Industry body established

earlier this month to help the business sector deal with the millennium

computer time-bomb issue, will begin hunting for a PR agency following

the appointment of a chairman next week.



The DTI has targeted a ’leading industrialist’, according to sources, to

head the group as it seeks a more proactive PR approach than that of

Taskforce 2000, the body established by the Conservatives in 1996.



Robin Guenier, executive director of Taskforce 2000, has consistently

criticised the Government over what he perceives as its indifference to

millennium issues. His organisation no longer works for the Government

but he intends to continue with Taskforce 2000’s efforts for the private

sector, aided by PR agency A Plus.



The DTI denies that Action 2000 was formed as a result of disagreements

with Guenier: ’Taskforce 2000 was formed to raise awareness of

millennium problems. It has done this job very well but we need new

impetus, turning awareness into action,’ said a spokesman.



The DTI has pledged pounds 1 million in funding to Action 2000 over the

next year and also has backing from the Confederation of British

Industry and the Computer Services and Software Association, the

Federation of the Electronics Industry, the National Computing Centre

and the British Bankers Association.



It will focus on programmes for small businesses and has developed a

database providing techniques to solve millennium problems.



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