HC Deb 22 February 1968 vol 759 cc774-6

Queen's Recommendation having been signified—

The Minister of State, Board of Trade (Mr. George Darling)

I beg to move, That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to replace the Merchandise Marks Acts 1887 to 1953 by fresh provisions prohibiting misdescriptions of goods, services, accommodation and facilities provided in the course of trade, and for other purposes, it is expedient to authorise the payment out of moneys provided by Parliament into the Exchequer of Northern Ireland of sums representing the expenses incurred in enforcing in Northern Ireland so much of the said Act of the present Session as relates to matters with respect to which the Parliament of Northern Ireland does not have power to make laws.

9.59 p.m.

Mr. Charles Fletcher-Cooke (Darwen)

I realise that this is narrowly drawn and the question is whether it is too narrowly drawn. The right hon. Gentleman will remember that we are much concerned with the enforcement provisions in the Bill and that money may be necessary to strengthen them. Would he undertake that if, during the debates in Committee, it should prove necessary, he will move another Resolution so that we should not be inhibited from discussing expenditure for enforcement?

The Minister of State, Board of Trade (Mr. George Darling)

I can quickly give the hon. and learned Gentleman the assurance which he wants. He will remember that, in the original Bill, in——

It being Ten o'clock the debate stood adjourned.

Ordered, That the Proceedings on the Motion relating to Education and Science may be entered upon and proceeded with at this day's Sitting at any hour, though opposed.—[Mr. Crossman.]

Question again proposed.

Mr. Darling

The hon. and learned Gentleman will remember that there was a standard money Clause in the 1966 Bill, but there has now been a change in the expenditure from central Government to local authorities and that part of the Money Resolution is no longer needed. The Board of Trade does not need to ask for money because we already prosecute under the Merchandise Marks Acts and that will be carried forward into the Bill. I can give an assurance, however, that we will not seek to restrict discussion in any way in Committee.

Question put and agreed to.