HC Deb 02 April 1957 vol 568 cc247-9
Mr. Speaker

It seems to me that the Amendment in the name of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Battersea, North (Mr. Jay), in page 3, line 22, to leave out "may" and insert "shall", is covered by the Government Amendments in the same and subsequent lines. I think that that applies to all the Amendments on this page of the Notice Paper. If the House agrees, I suggest that in the general discussion which takes place on the first Amendment standing in the name of the President of the Board of Trade we could discuss all these Amendments together, in so far as discussion is necessary.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade (Mr. F. J. Erroll)

I beg to move, in page 3, line 22, to leave out "may".

Clause 3 as originally drafted was permissive, but during a discussion in Committee hon. Members made it clear that it might be preferable if the Clause was amended so as to make some of the provisions mandatory. My right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade said that he would consider the matter, and as a result of his consideration he has tabled this and the related Amendments on the Notice Paper.

Their effect is to make it clear that the Board must prescribe certain things in the regulations, such as definitions of the films which are to participate, rates of payment, furnishing of information, persons to whom payments are to be made, arrangements for payment and for recovery of over-payment. On the other hand, the Board of Trade, while it will still have the power, will not necessarily have to exercise the power of prescribing additional items in the regulations, namely, the prescribing of different rates of payment for different classes of films, and for payments to assignees. That is left permissive, but the other matters to which I have referred would become mandatory, and I hope that the House will be agreeable to accepting them.

Mr. Douglas Jay (Battersea, North)

I notice that in accepting the substance of our suggestion the Government have found it necessary to put down rather more Amendments than we had supposed necessary. But I am very willing to accept it from them that this is a more effective, precise or stylistic way of achieving the result. What we have really done here is to make sure that these regulations, which amount, in a sense, to formulating a sort of taxation, will at least be embodied in regulations which will come before the House, which the House can discuss, and can, if necessary reject.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Speaker

I think that the other related Government Amendments are all consequential. That being so, perhaps I may put them to the House. If any hon. Member wishes to stop me, would he please rise in his place?

Further Amendments made: In page 3, line 23, at beginning insert "shall".

In line, 25, at beginning insert "shall".

In line 26, after "and", insert "may".

In line 29, at beginning insert "shall".

In line 33, at beginning insert "shall".

In line 34, after "and", insert "may".

In line 37, at beginning insert "shall".

In line 39, at beginning insert "may". —[Sir D. Eccles.]