§ 40. Mr. Goodhew
asked the Minister of Aviation when he expects to sign a contract for the supply of Avro 748 military transport aircraft required by the Royal Air Force; and when he expects delivery to commence.
§ Mr. J. Amery
Work on the order for Avro 748 MF aircraft for the R.A.F. is proceeding under an interim contract signed last October. A full fixed-price contract is in the final stages of negotiation. I ant not prepared to forecast delivery dales at this stage.
Mr. Good hew
How long is the Royal Air Force to wait for this aircraft which it needs so vitally? It is eighteen months since we were assured that it would be produced very soon. Is my right hon. Friend aware that, had his predecessor agreed upon an aircraft desired by the Royal Air Force, the Handley Page Dart Herald, deliveries would have commenced already?
§ Mr. Amery
I am not prepared to comment on the last part of my hon. Friend's supplementary question because I have not the figures to my hand at the moment. I was closely involved in that particular discussion. If it is any consolation to my hon. Friend, I can tell him that I am flying to Bonn in an Avro 748 this evening.