§ 10. Mr. Anderson
asked the Secretary of State for Wales what arrangements exist for co-operation on matters of common concern between the Welsh Economic Council and the South-West Regional Economic Planning Council.
§ Mr. George Thomas
The two Councils exchange information regularly and have undertaken co-operative action on the Severn Bridge study. In addition, my right hon. Friend, the First Secretary of State ensures that there is full exchange of views and information between all Planning Councils.
§ Mr. Anderson
In the light of the Severn Bridge, with the increased trade links between the two regions, and in the light, too, of the Severnside announcements which will straddle both regions, would not my hon. Friend agree that there is a need for more formalised links between the Welsh and South-West Economic Regions? Will my hon. Friend consider the establishment of a standing committee, composed of representatives from both regions, so that there can be co-operation laterally, rather than always going to London under the aegis of the Department of Economic Affairs?
§ Mr. Thomas
I am satisfied that there is good co-operation between ourselves 846 and the South-West Economic Council, just as there is between Wales and the West Midlands, and between Wales and the North-West. If the proposal recommended by my hon. Friend is thought wise, I shall not hesitate to follow it.
§ Mr. Robert Cooke
Will the hon. Gentleman do everything that he can to make his Welsh friends co-operate with my West Country friends?
§ Mr. Thomas
The hon. Gentleman has been here long enough to know that cooperation is a characteristic of the Welsh.