HC Deb 13 February 1956 vol 548 cc2064-5
39. Mr. Palmer

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what discussions he is having with the Central Electricity Authority and the area electricity boards on the recommendations of the Herbert Committee; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Aubrey Jones

I have asked the Authority and each board to let me have by the end of this month their views on the recommendations dealing with the statutory structure of the industry and certain other matters of national policy, and later to supplement these views with any observations they may wish to make on other aspects of the Report.

Mr. Palmer

May I put two points to the right hon. Gentleman? In view of the publication of this controversial report, does the right hon. Gentleman agree that it is desirable that industry should not be left too long in suspense as to the intentions of the Government? Secondly, will the right hon. Gentleman give an assurance that if he proposes changes he will take into consultation all the bodies and interests concerned, particularly the employees in the industry?

Mr. Jones

I am in entire agreement with the first part of the question. I recognise that the fact of this report means great uncertainty for the industry, and I am most anxious to clear away that uncertainty as quickly as possible. With regard to the second part of the question, I have already given an assurance that I will take into account the views expressed.