HC Deb 18 December 1961 vol 651 cc910-1
3. Mr. Edelman

asked the Minister of Labour how many workers were employed in the motor industry and other industries associated with it on 1st December, 1961.

Mr. Hare

The latest figures available are for the end of October. It is estimated that at that date there were 409,300 persons employed in manufacture of motor vehicles, parts and accessories.

Mr. Edelman

Do not these figures show a substantial decline from the figures up to 1st December, 1960? In view of the fact that in the Midlands there are now 21,500 workers on short time, how can the Minister reconcile his plans for the expansion of the industry with a contraction in the number of workers?

Mr. Hare

One must keep a sense of proportion in this matter. It is true, as the hon. Gentleman says, that the figure I have given is 23,000 lower than the figure a year ago, but it must be remembered that the industry expanded very considerably between October, 1959, November, 1960, and the figure I gave in my Answer is still over 6,000 more than the number employed in October, 1959.