HC Deb 12 December 1967 vol 756 cc198-9
27. Mr. Bryant Godman Irvine

asked the Minister of Power what representations he has made to the Electricity Council regarding the level of its appropriation for research.

Mr. Freeson

None, Sir.

Mr. Irvine

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that out of the total revenue of £1,141.4 million, only £7.6 million is spent on research and that this compares with a business like I.C.I., which, out of total revenue of £496½2 million, spends £30 million on research? Is the right hon. Gentleman aware—[HON. MEMBERS: "Too long."]—that this represents 0.66 per cent, spent on research compared with 6.0 per cent, respectively? Is he also aware—[HON. MEMBERS: "Oh, no."] —that about £17 million is spent on re pairs to typewriters and so on, compared with only £7½6 million on—

Mr. Speaker

Order. Questions must be reasonably brief.

Mr. Freeson

I wish to deal with this subject in a rather more serious vein than the content of the hon. Gentleman's supplemnetary question. The position is that the amount spent on research by the industry totals about £10.6 million today compared with £2.2 million in 1959–60. That is a considerable increase, and about £270,000 in the current programme is being spent on research into underground cabling alone.

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