Postponed Proceeding resumed on Question,
That the Cinematograph Films (Distribution of Levy) (Amendment) Regulations, 1954, a draft of which was laid before this House on 30th June, be approved.
§ Question again proposed.
§ 7.46 p.m.
§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade (Mr. David Price)
In the absence of the hon. Member for Newcastle-under-Lyme (Mr. Swingler) who was addressing us a little earlier, and of the hon. Member for Flint, East (Mrs. White), perhaps I might reply briefly to the points that they made.
I think that the hon. Lady will find that most of the points which she raised were covered in my opening speech in introducing the Regulations. Both the hon. Lady and the hon. Gentleman asked why we were bringing these Regulations forward now because they had read in the Trade Press that these pay television experiments were not likely to take place as early as had been thought hitherto. I assure the hon. Lady that my right hon. Friend the Postmaster-General will be issuing the first licence shortly, and that under that licence the operator will be free to start as soon as he gets the licence. My right hon. Friend has reason to suppose that the operator concerned is anxious to get started as soon as possible.
If we had delayed these Regulations until the new Parliament came into being, there would have been a big delay, and we would not have been able to get these experimental trials on pay television going very quickly. This is why we have brought forward these Regulations now.
§ Question put and agreed to.