§ 29. Mr. S. O. Davies
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies the number of persons currently unemployed in Hong Kong; how these figures compare with those of twelve months ago; how many factories in that Colony have been closed down this year; and what steps are being taken to provide employment for the displaced workers.
§ Mr. Profumo
There are no official statistics of unemployment in Hong Kong. It is estimated that the total number of jobs has not decreased in the last twelve months although the entry of refugees from China has increased competition for them. Between 1st October, 1956, and 30th September, 1957, 138 small factories and workshops were closed down because of unsuitable premises and a further 179 factories stopped work, many in order to remove to new premises. During the period, the total number of registered factories increased from 3,293 to 3,359 and the number of industrial workers employed in them increased by about 3,000. Additional jobs were created by the large reclamation projects now proceeding and by the continued building boom.
§ Mr. Davies
Is the hon. Gentleman satisfied that every possible effort is being made to find new employment for these displaced persons?