HC Deb 30 May 1962 vol 660 c1344
23. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what progress he has made in resolving the financial complexities referred to in his letter early in 1962 to the hon. and learned Member for Aberdeen, North, arising from the report of the Joint Working Party, set up by him, to plan the provision of a pontoon dock for Aberdeen; and when the construction of that pontoon dock will commence.

Mr. Maclay

I understand that the joint working party— which was set up by the Aberdeen Harbour Board and not by myself— is considering a report by a firm of industrial consultants who were engaged to examine the problem of dock replacement with particular reference to costs, and economic viability.

Mr. Hughes

Does not the Secretary of State realise that it is thoroughly unpatriotic, uneconomic and ridiculous on the part of the Government to deny work, or money for important work, of this sort and yet seek to provide grants and loans for foreign shipyards, thereby driving British shipyard workers out of employment, and will he take urgent steps to see that this pontoon dock is started at once?

Mr. Maclay

No. As I explained in my original Answer, it is a matter still for the Aberdeen Harbour Board. I have not said the Government would not supply money to help the building of it. The position is that the Government would consider the question of assistance under the Local Employment Act so far as the undertaking would provide additional employment.