HC Deb 26 October 1967 vol 751 c1876
34. Mr. Marten

asked the Secretary of State for Economic Affairs if he will make a statement about progress with the National Plan.

The Joint Under-Secretary of State for Economic Affairs (Mr. Alan Williams)

I would refer the hon. Gentleman to my reply to the hon. Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. G. Campbell) on 24th October.

Mr. Marten

I saw that reply, hut as the Minister is a member of a Government who pride themselves on planning, can he at least give an estimate of the date when this National Plan is to be published, and in the meantime can he publish a statement of the assumptions on which planning is being made?

Mr. Williams

Preliminary discussions are going on with N.E.D.C., and as soon as we are able to make an announcement to the House we shall do so.

Mr. Michael Foot

Can my hon. Friend say whether the hold-up of the publication of the National Plan is in any way associated with the country's application to join the Common Market, and, if so, will he not confirm that that obstacle has now been removed?

Mr. Williams

I think the hon. Member is a little premature in his last assumption It is, of course, only one of the many international trading factors complicating the preliminary discussions at this stage.