HC Deb 26 April 1966 vol 727 cc521-2
25. Mr. Frank Allaun

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if, in order to halt the growth in the monopoly control of the Press, by certain newspaper groups, he will encourage the survival of smaller circulation papers, such as the Sunday Citizen, by asking Departments to give an increased share of their advertising to such publications.

Mr. MacDermot

Advertising for Departments is placed with newspapers so as to achieve the required results in the most economical way, and by no other test.

Mr. Allaun

Is my hon. and learned Friend aware that out of £5¼ million on Government Press advertising last year, only £2,530 went to the Sunday Citizen and precisely £30 to Tribune? In view of the widespread concern on both sides of the House about shrinking Press freedom, does he think that this is adequate or even proportionate support for the remaining independent newspapers?

Mr. MacDermot

I shall be glad to give my hon. Friend further information about proportionate advertising. However, I assure the House that I think that we should get ourselves into real difficulties if we started to place advertising on any principle other than that of seeking to achieve the object at which the advertising is directed.