HC Deb 12 February 1946 vol 419 cc160-1
18. Mr. M. MacMillan

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps are being taken by the bodies responsible for the success of the herring industry and white fishing industry financial assistance schemes, recently introduced, to ensure that first opportunity to purchase either new or second-hand vessels is afforded to sea-going fishermen on the working side of those industries, either by direct contract with sellers or through the statutory authorities.

Mr. Westwood

I have not had any evidence to show the need for the addition to the schemes for grants and loans to persons qualified under 'he Herring Industry Act, 1944, and the Inshore Fishing Industry Act, 1945, of any preferential arrangement of the kind suggested in the Question. If, however, my hon. Friend has any information bearing on the matter I shall be very glad to consider it.

Mr. MacMillan

Is my right hon. Friend aware that the purpose of this Question is to try and secure assurance that priority will be given to men actually engaged in fishing, so that others who want to employ them, while sitting on the shore and taking the profits, will not have the benefit?

Mr. Westwood

I shall take note of the point made by my hon. Friend.

Mr. Henderson Stewart

Would the ' right hon. Gentleman explain how he hopes to bring prosperity to this industry, when his colleague the President of the Board of Trade intimated on Saturday last that no further nets are to be manufactured?

Mr. Hector Hughes

Will the Minister see that the first opportunity mentioned in the Question extends not only to vessels but also to gear?

Mr. Westwood

I will certainly take that point into consideration.

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