HC Deb 30 June 1966 vol 730 c2174
25. Mr. Dickens

asked the First Secretary of State and Secretary of State for Economic Affairs if he will publish an annual review of progress under the National Plan.

Mr. George Brown

My present intention is to publish a review of progress under the National Plan this autumn. There will, of course, be further reviews published later.

Mr. Dickens

Is my right hon. Friend aware that we on this side of the House welcome the statement this afternoon? Is he further aware that we regard it as indispensable to the democratic economic planning for him to keep the National Plan under continuous annual review both in the country and in this House?

Mr. Brown

I am much obliged.

Mr. Iain Macleod

Can the First Secretary say whether this annual review is based on new information, obtained by questionnaire or in other ways from industry, or is it a report of the follow-up through the "Little Neddies" and other bodies?

Mr. Brown

I was very careful not to tie myself to there necessarily being an annual review. Whereas one wishes to keep a plan under regular review, one does not want everyone's attention so taken up with reviewing it that they have not much time left to implement it. As to the review which we are making this year, industry has been consulted and we are now collecting the results of that consultation. The review did not take the form of a full-scale questionnaire, as was the case last year.

Sir Harmar Nicholls

Has the First Secretary noticed that the payroll tax cuts right across the National Plan?

Mr. Brown

There is a Question down on that subject later, but in any case I have not noticed what the hon. Gentleman said.