HC Deb 30 April 1969 vol 782 cc1421-2
24. Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

asked the President of the Board of Trade to what extent the entitlement of companies to receipt of industrial development grant is related to the expected number of jobs to be created by the investment to which the grant relates.

Mr. Dell

In considering assistance under the Local Employment Acts the Board of Trade are required to have regard to the relationship between the expenditure involved and the employment likely to be provided.

It is not a condition of investment grants under the Industrial Development Act that the investment must create additional employment, though of course it often does.

Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

Has the hon. Gentleman noted reports that taxpayers' subsidies to the projected American petrochemical complex at Invergordon may work out at £176,000 for every job created? Is this what he described earlier as an example of the effectiveness of the investment grant system in encouraging industrial development?

Mr. Dell

I have noted such reports. I cannot, of course, give information about individual firms, but I do not believe that report, and I am surprised that the hon. Gentleman does.

Mr. Maclennan

Will my hon. Friend note that the suggestion being made by the Opposition, that this development would not be welcomed, will be rebutted strenuously and energetically throughout the Highlands?

Mr. Dell

It is, of course, true that the investment grant system has helped greatly to create employment in Scotland and elsewhere.