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.