§ 23. Mr. Grimston
asked the Assistant Postmaster-General the yearly saving in road transport costs which his Department expects to effect through the termination of Messrs. Macnamara's contract for the carriage of mails and the provision of its own road service in lieu.
§ Mr. Burke
In my reply of 16th December I informed the hon. Member that my noble Friend was satisfied that it would make for efficiency and economy if these services were to be undertaken by the Department. I cannot, however, strike a balance in such precise terms as the hon. Member asks, since it would involve not only estimating Departmental costs some years ahead but comparing those costs with a new contract figure which can only be hypothetical. It is, however, expected that economies will result from the greater flexibility of the new arrangements.
§ Mr. Grimston
If the hon. Gentleman does not know what the new contract figure is, how can he possibly say that his Department will make a saving in the future?
§ Mr. Grimston
Does not the hon. Gentleman know that in past years the contract has remained with this company because the Post Office could not do it for the same price?
§ Lieut.-Commander Joynson-Hicks
Has not the hon. Gentleman got some figure or some sort of estimate of the expected saving from the switching over of the contract from this firm which has efficiently carried His Majesty's mail for about 100 years?