HC Deb 12 November 1929 vol 231 cc1690-1

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he will reconsider the terms offered to public port authorities for development work and treat them as non-revenue producing undertakings, in order to encourage such authorities immediately to proceed with the schemes which they have prepared and which when completed will be of permanent value to trade?


I cannot treat revenue producing undertakings as though they were non-revenue-producing. I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the statement made by my hon. Friend the Chancellor for the Duchy of Lancaster, during the Debate on the fourth of this month, in which he announced the Government's decision materially improving the terms to be granted in the case of large dock undertakings where the period of construction would be long. These improved terms, beyond which the Government would not think it right to go, are generous, amounting to 32 per cent. of the cost of the works, and I trust that dock authorities will without delay take full advantage of them.


Does the Lord Privy Seal not consider that work done on the docks, with possible effect on trade, is of equal importance to work done on roads?


Yes; it is because I realise the importance of providing facilities for our export trade, that I have concentrated on dock and similar undertakings; and a Government grant of 32 per cent. to a revenue-producing undertaking, if there be anything in it, ought to be sufficient inducement to them, and I am glad to say from my experience that it is.