§ 15. Mr. Boothby
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he is aware of the growing threat to the prosperity of the fishing industry caused by the steadily increasing price of boats, fuel, nets and rope; and what steps he proposes to take to deal with it.
§ 24. Mr. Henderson Stewart
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is aware of the rapid and continuing rise in the price of gear for fishing vessels; and what steps he proposes to take to deal with the matter.
I am aware that the prices of boats, fuel, nets and ropes have 894 risen and I realise that this has made conditions more difficult for fishermen. As regards the second part of the Question, I have nothing to add to what was said last Thursday by my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.
§ Mr. Boothby
Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that this continued rise in costs is having a disastrous effect on every section of the fishing industry, and that unless steps are taken to deal with it quickly, the industry as a whole will be put out of business?
§ Mr. Malcolm MacMillan
Does the Secretary of State not think that he should treat as a matter of urgency the proper protection of the fishermen against the insufficiently controlled exploitation by private enterprise?
§ Lady Tweedsmuir
Does the right hon. Gentleman realise that we had a Debate last night on this subject, to which there was a most unsatisfactory reply, and will he therefore give this matter his personal attention, for it is very urgent?
I do not agree that the reply was unsatisfactory, but I do agree that it is a matter of great importance, which we have had under continuous and active consideration.
§ Mr. J. J. Robertson
In view of the inability of the Board of Trade to control the rise in gear prices, will my right hon. Friend consider the possibility of consulting with the Minister of Food with a view to having a special bonus paid to inshore fishermen for fish landed on the day it is caught?
§ Mr. Boothby
In view of the unsatisfactory reply of the right hon. Gentleman to my Question, I give notice that I shall raise this matter on the Adjournment at the earliest opportunity.