§ 39. Mr. Lawson
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys engaged as apprentices and learners, respectively, in the iron and steel industry of Scotland, during each of the past three years.
§ Mr. Lawson
As it is possible that the steel industry is the industry upon which Scotland's future most depends, is the right hon. Gentleman satisfied that the present position is satisfactory? There has been a decline in the last year. Is he in touch with the industry and doing everything he can, and will he tell us what he is doing to stimulate the industry into recruiting more youngsters?
§ Mr. Hare
One can never be satisfied with these matters. I should like to see an improvement, but the House must realise that the overall apprenticeship situation in Scotland has improved. In 1962, the proportion of boys who obtained apprenticeships in all industries in Scotland was 38.9 per cent. compared with 36.2 per cent. in Great Britain as a whole.
§ 41. Mr. J. Robertson
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys employed as apprentices in the railway vehicle and wagon building industry in each of the past three years; and what proportion of these was engaged in Scotland.
§ Mr. Robertson
Does not the right hon. Gentleman agree that the figures indicate that Scotland is not having its proper share of this manufacturing industry? Would he approach his right hon. Friends to see whether something cannot be done in this regard and to see whether Scotland cannot get back some of the work of building railway wagons and railway vehicles?
§ 42. Mr. Steele
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys engaged as apprentices in the telegraph and telephone apparatus manufacturing industry of Great Britain in each of the past three years; and what proportion of these was engaged in Scotland.
§ Mr. Steele
Is not the right hon. Gentleman shocked by those figures? He has been telling us all afternoon that the Government would do all they could for Scotland. That has been his repeated cry. But while apprenticeships in the old industries have been going down, here is a new industry for which Scotland is getting only 1 per cent. of the apprentices. Will the right hon. Gentleman tell the President of the Board of Trade and the Treasury that that figure indicates a complete failure of the Distribution of Industry Act, and will he do something about it?
§ 43. Mr. Hannan
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys engaged as apprentices in scientific, surgical and photographic instruments industry in Great Britain in each of the past three years; and what proportion of these was employed in Scotland.
§ Mr. Hannan
Do not these figures show that there is a great need for an expansion of this industry in Scotland? Can the Minister confirm or deny whether new jobs in this industry were included in the list which the Patronage Secretary said that he had in his pocket when he was addressing a meeting of Young Unionists in Glasgow recently?
§ 44. Mrs. Cullen
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys engaged as apprentices in the industry for the production of man-made fibres in Great Britain during each of the past three years; and what proportion of those was engaged in Scotland.
§ Mrs. Cullen
Do not the figures show that Scotland is not getting her fair share of these skilled trades? What proposals do the Government have for improving the prospects for young men in this growing industry?
§ 45. Mr. Manuel
asked the Minister of Labour what was the number of boys engaged as apprentices in the railway industry in Scotland in each of the past three years.
§ Mr. Manuel
Does not the right hon. Gentleman appreciate the significance of these very small figures? Could he break them down into even smaller figures showing the number recruited in each of the three years into the motive power grades? Should he not exercise his influence with the powers that be to ensure that we retain as much of the railway industry in Scotland as we can, so that the recruiting figures grow and do not fall into oblivion?
§ Mr. Stodart
Would not my right hon. Friend admit that there is at least one industry, the electronics industry, in which Scotland has had a greater share of its proportion of the growth of the United Kingdom economy in the last few years?
§ Mr. Bence
Is the right hon. Gentle-aware that several of his colleagues, including the Secretary of State for Scotland, have been making speeches in Scotland and saying that Scotland needs greater diversification, but that unfortunately more skilled men are needed? Does the right hon. Gentleman believe that his statements of this afternoon show that his Ministry is helping to create more skilled men, when the Scottish figures of apprenticeships for most of the growing industries in the United Kingdom are so small?