HC Deb 07 October 1942 vol 383 cc1212-3
50. Mr. Hammersley

asked the Minister of Production the functions of the Programmes and Planning Division, apart from compiling satistical returns of Imperial, Dominion and American requirements?

Mr. Lyttelton

The Programmes and Planning Division of my Ministry consists of certain members who sit with representatives of the Service and Supply Departments and together constitute the Joint War Production Planning Group. The main functions of this body were described to the House on 24th March and again on 14th July. Briefly, these are, first, to ensure that production is closely and continuously related to strategical requirements and secondly, to advise what proportion of the national resources and production is to be allocated to each service and to civilian requirements. The Division is in close touch with the planning section of the Combined Production and Resources Board and other similar bodies in Washington. There is a frequent interchange of personnel between the two bodies.

Mr. Hammersley

Is there any practical relationship between planned production and the actual achievement?

Mr. Lyttelton

Yes, Sir.

Mr. Hopkinson

Having regard to the nature of the functions detailed by the right hon. Gentleman, why is a professional economist put in charge, and why is so very little done except the compilation of statistics?

Mr. Lyttelton

The Planning Section is not responsible for action in the field of production. There is no one with a larger experience of programme planning than the economist to whom my hon. Friend has referred.

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