HC Deb 03 March 1958 vol 583 cc813-4
6. Mr. Beswick

asked the Minister of Supply when he expects to make a decision with regard to the purchase of a military freight transport aircraft; and whether this proposed purchase represents the last of the requirements now contemplated for a military transport machine.

Mr. Aubrey Jones

A study is now being made by the Service Departments of new requirements for freighter aircraft of all types, and I am in close consultation with them.

Mr. Beswick

Everyone is asking that the aircraft industry should reshape itself, and that there should be mergers and a general new start in the industry. How can it reshape itself and how can a new start be made unless it knows what are the requirements of the biggest customer, namely, the British Government? When will there be a decision about this? Before the spring?

Mr. Jones

The hon. Gentleman tried to catch me out a moment ago on an earlier promise I made in the matter of time. I think, therefore, that I had better refrain from making a further promise in this respect. I appreciate that this is an urgent matter, and the examination is being undertaken with a sense of the urgency.

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