HC Deb 27 November 1962 vol 668 cc189-90
14. Commander Kerans

asked the President of the Board of Trade what consideration he is giving to the placing of Government contracts where practicable in The Hartlepools in view of the worsening unemployment situation.

Mr. D. Price

Firms in The Hartlepools can benefit from the contracts preference schemes operated by the Government Purchasing Departments. They should apply to be put on the trades lists of those Departments whose needs they think they are in a position to supply and they will then be invited to tender in appropriate cases.

Commander Kerans

Does not my hon. Friend agree that, with 9.6 per cent. unemployed in my area, I am facing a very difficult situation and that there is urgent need to co-ordinate Government Departments in order to bring industry there? Time is running out and I cannot buy time.

Hon. Members


15. Commander Kerans

asked the President of the Board of Trade how many applications for Board of Trade Advisory Council assistance he has received from The Hartlepools for the years 1960, 1961 and 1962 to the latest convenient date and how many of these applications were approved.

Mr. D. Price

Fourteen applications have been received, two in 1960, five in 1961 and seven in 1962. Five of these have been withdrawn, or are in abeyance at the applicant's request. Of the other nine, two have been recommended for assistance, four have been rejected—two of these being from the same firm—and three are under consideration.

Commander Kerans

Does not my hon. Friend agree that these numbers are not very large and that the time factor for a B.O.T.A.C. application seems to get longer and longer? Cannot the time be cut down in the interests of the public?

Mr. Price

The time taken on these applications is not really very long. Under the Local Employment Act, B.O.T.A.C., before it recommends assistance, is required to be satisfied that, after the initial launching period, the prospects of the applicant firm conducting its affairs successfully without further assistance are reasonably good.

Mr. P. Williams

Is the Board of Trade, the Treasury or any other Department responsible for the co-ordination of Government policy in bringing work to areas of high unemployment?

Mr. Price

If my hon. Friend will put that question on the Order Paper, I will endeavour to give him a reply.

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