HC Deb 10 December 1969 vol 793 cc511-75
Mr. Speaker

Before we begin the next debate, may I remind the House that every Scottish Member is trying to take part in what will be a very short debate? Very short speeches will help.

7.12 p.m.

Mr. Gordon Campbell (Moray and Nairn)

I beg to move, That this House regrets the serious net reduction in jobs in Scotland, estimated by Her Majesty's Government at 67,000 in the last three years for which figures are available; notes that this shows the forecasts in the White Paper on the Scottish Economy published in January, 1966, to have been thoroughly misleading; and concludes that the results of Her Majesty's Government's policies have fallen far short of their own expectations. Scotland, with the rest of Britain, has been suffering from a credit squeeze, high interest rates and minimal growth. But the matter which we are raising tonight is of particular concern—the net reduction in persons in employment in Scotland. According to the Department of Employment and Productivity, the period from December, 1965 to December, 1968 is the latest for which comparable figures are available.

There is concern for two reasons first, because it is a substantial net loss in three years, second, because it is entirely contrary to the Government's own estimates and stated expectations. We are, therefore, hoping to provide the Government with time this evening to explain why their forecasts were so inaccurate or what went wrong in the event.

No one can be happy with these figures which the Department of Employment and Productivity has provided. The December, 1968 figures were provisional when first given. Perhaps they can now be confirmed or made more precise. The figures have been made available to the House in Parliamentary replies and breakdowns have been given by the Department in correspondence with me and my hon. Friends.

No one can be satisfied, although the Government w ill no doubt explain in their way what the situation is and how it has arisen. Because a run-down at this rate—67,000 in three years—if continued, would not be consistent with the kind of regional development which promotes strong industrial growth, we feel impelled to ask the Government certain questions not only about the past but about the present and the future. We know what the Government were expecting, because the years up to 1970 were set out en page 9 of the White Paper on the Scottish economy. At the same time and on the same page, the Government recorded what had happened from 1960 to 1964, most of this period being before they came into office.

Thus, there were published together in January, 1966, figures for the whole period 1960 to 1970, in two parts. First was the period 1960 to 1964, four years, with the past, we presume, accurately recorded, second was the period 19651970, six years projected and estimated. To anyone who may ask me, as some have, why I am choosing these periods, I simply reply that I am not choosing them: these are the periods chosen by the White Paper.

From the four years 1960 to 1964, we learn that 157,000 new jobs came into existence. From the six years, 1965 to 1970, we find that considerably fewer130,000—new jobs were estimated over a longer period. This was therefore a modest projection, even though it must have included many jobs already arranged before 1965, such as those estimated at about 6,000 which were coming in with the move of the Post Office Savings Bank to Glasgow, which had already been arranged, and also the new pulp mill, which was then being built, and from which another 1,000 jobs were expected, and the new electronics industry, which was expanding fast in that time.

Also important from page 9 of the White Paper are the figures for the jobs disappearing. In the four years 19601964, 127,000 jobs disappeared. That is a large number, but there was still a net gain of 30,000, because 157,000 new jobs were created. Now we come to the really significant figure. In the six years 19651970 an estimate of only 74,000 new jobs were reckoned to disappear. This is less than half of the previous rate—127,000 in four years.

Therefore, it is no good the Minister saying, as he did the other night, that this was a sudden run-down of the old traditional industries. The run-down had already started, at a high rate. Clearly, the 74,000 over the six years was a very doubtful figure in the light of what had already been happening. It is difficult to understand how this very low estimate was made. It is clear that the modernisation in agriculture would continue, meaning fewer men employed on the land. It was also clear that the reduction of manpower in the coal industry would continue. Did the Government suddenly expect a dramatic change in the situation in 1965? If they did, I am sure that the hon. Member for Midlothian (Mr. Eadie), who has watched this situation so closely, would have been extremely interested to know.

The miscalculation was described at the bottom of page 9: In none of the sectors of industry where employment is likely to contract would the rate of contraction be expected to be as heavy or as rapid as it has been in the past. There was no reason given why that statement should have been made.

The result of that miscalculation is that instead of a net gain of jobs of 60,000 in the six years we have had a net loss of 67,000 in only three years within the six-year period. If the Government's explanation is still what the Minister of State said on 24th November, that this was all caused by a faulty estimate, the faulty estimate must have been of considerable magnitude—of the order of a loss of about 100,000 jobs which could not have been expected.

In addition to page 9 of the White Paper, we also have the Secretary of State's own statements in 1964. In the Glasgow Herald of 24th September, 1964, it was reported: Mr. Ross said that Labour aimed at creating 40,000 new jobs a year in Scotland to cope with school-leavers and people made redundant through the run-down of established industry. There were similar statements in two other newspapers from that time which I have. All three newspapers gave the same figure of 40,000 new jobs a year.

The Secretary of State made a great deal of this matter of new jobs as an important point, and he also made a lot of the figure of 40,000 new jobs a year. This has created a paradox. At the very time when he was speaking, the rate of 40,000 new jobs a year was being achieved. Not only that, but at that time, when the White Paper records 157,000 new jobs in four years—which is about as close to 40,000 a year as one can get—he was speaking towards the end of the period in which this target was actually being achieved.

Then a little over a year later that he put forward his own proposals and estimates for the future. He chose a target of 130,000 which meant only about 21,000 new jobs a year, or almost half the number that he himself had been putting forward as a target before the 1964 election. I have described it as a paradox, and I know that strange things happen in public life, but to have been advocating a target which was at the time actually being achieved and then later to put forward a programme of one's own amounting to almost half that target figure is bizarre in the extreme, and probably unique in this country's politics.

In a one-sided Adjournment discussion the other evening—it would be misleading to describe it as a debate—which was started by the hon. Member for Motherwell (Mr. Lawson), the Minister of State said that none of us on this side had predicted that the 74,000 estimated run-down figure was incorrect. The Minister of State was wrong there, as on other points, as we could have told him had he given us the chance to get into that discussion.

I said it on 26th January, 1966, the day of the publication of the White Paper. I said it that same evening on a television programme. It was on the day it came out. I am sorry that the hon. Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Mr. David Steel) is not with us at the moment, because he took part in the programme and would remember it. One can hardly do better than comment on a White Paper on the day of the publication of the White Paper. When I was asked to comment on the White Paper in the television programme I said that the figure of 130,000 was too small because it was unlikely to outweigh the number of jobs which would disappear. I had in front of me the White Paper, open at page 9.

I said that on the first day and I have said it ever since, and for the Minister of State to make the statement he did make shows that he has not been paying attention to what we on this side have been saying. That is no surprise to us. If he had said that we keep on saying the same thing, that we are repetitive, he might perhaps have had a point, but to say that it has not been said at all is ridiculous.

The Government made great play of that 130,000 figure. It was attractive, and it dazzled some people at first sight, but in fact it was a very unambitious target. They also made great play of the estimate of a net gain of 60,000 new jobs during the six-year period. The fact is that their assessment of the new jobs to be created was modest and their assessment of the reduction in the old traditional kind of jobs was unrealistic. The publication of this misleading picture about two months before polling day in the General Election was no doubt entirely fortuitous.

I believe that some part of the explanation lies in the failure to obtain growth in the economy. I also suggest that one important factor was not known to the Secretary of State in January, 1969, and I am prepared to grant him that. It was, indeed, a factor unknown to almost everyone until it was announced on 3rd May. 1966. It was the selective employment tax. I grant that the Secretary of State's calculations could have been upset by it. Information provided in Parliamentary replies makes it clear that this tax has contributed to the total reduction in jobs in Scotland, particularly in the distributive and service trades and industries.

I believe that both the Secretary of State and the Minister of State are to speak in this debate, and I hope that we will get some comment on whether that tax did to some extent upset their calculations. I exonerate the Secretary of State personally to this degree because he could not have known about the selective employment tax, but let him tell us whether he thinks that it altered his estimates.

The Minister of State has mentioned on earlier occasions that 119,000 new jobs have so far been obtained during the six-year period which is due to end in a year's time. Are all these jobs yet on the ground, or are they in sight—arranged, but not yet in Scotland? That 119,000 figure is modest, like the target, but it is not nearly enough to offset the reductions taking place in employment in Scotland.

Let me make it clear that I am very concerned with the type and quality of jobs as well as the numbers of jobs. Type and quality certainly matter. For example, I accept that ten jobs that are eminently suitable, or liable to propagate other jobs once started, are better than a dozen indifferent jobs. But any increase that there may have been in type and quality in the last four years cannot possibly mitigate the net loss of jobs running into tens of thousands. I will be the first to accept the argument that jobs of a better kind, more lasting and better paid jobs, may be coming in, but that cannot be the answer to the whole of this problem.

It is also important that certain kinds of jobs should be located in Scotland, if possible. We particularly hope that the head offices of companies and other organisations will be located in Scotland, and research establishments, too. The Scottish Council has rightly expressed its anxiety about some jobs of this kind leaving Scotland. The Post Office Savings Bank was a very good instance of the Government themselves making a move in the right direction, and setting an example.

In a debate on 1st May I raised the question of loss of jobs with the Minister of State—at that time, the Department s calculations for the latest period it could cover was a loss of 35,000 jobs—but the Minister did not reply. I accept that there was a shortage of time because of the antics of the hon. Member for Fife, West (Mr. William Hamilton) in that debate. He decided to filibuster a Scottish debate by speaking for one-and-a-half hours. Worse than that, he filibustered private Members' time—and that is precious to all private Members. For a private Member to win a Ballot and to have time between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on a Thursday was fortunate, because it was a particularly suitable time for a Scottish debate. It was only two weeks after the Budget, and therefore it was highly appropriate to discuss the effect of that Budget on Scotland. For the hon. Member for Fife, West, himself a private Member, to eat up private Members' time in that way I can describe only as an act of Parliamentary cannibalism. The conclusion which one could reach was that he was trying to stop the facts and the arguments from being heard.

Mr. Donald Dewar (Aberdeen, South) rose

Mr. Campbell

I did not refer to the hon. Member and I will not give way to him.

We come to the hon. Member for Motherwell. This occurred at Question Time, and I congratulate him on his gallantry, for he suddenly came to the rescue of the Prime Minister, ending the questioning, just as the Leader of the Opposition was being called to put a question, by giving notice of an Adjournment debate. As he did not state the conventional reason—namely, the unsatisfactory nature of the Prime Minister's reply—we assume that he has adopted a new rôle as Don Quixote, protecting his Front Bench. Why is he so sensitive? Why do he and the hon. Member for Fife. West, feel that they have to protect their Front Bench? Why are they so protective? Surely they could let the Government give their explanation. We look forward to hearing it tonight.

The hon. Member for Motherwell decided to go through with his Adjournment debate on 24th November. He spoke as long as possible in that debate so that he and the Minister were the only speakers in it or, rather, in that discussion. Nevertheless, as an element which is not customary to this kind of debate, he produced a remarkable apologia for the Government. For example, he called in aid, to try to explain this figure of a net loss of 67,000 jobs, a dip in the birth rate early in the 1950's. I am sure that neither the Government nor their advisers would have thought of that. He told us that the school-leaving age was rising, although it had not yet officially happened.

Mr. George Lawson (Motherwell)


Mr. Campbell

He talked about people leaving school later. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."] I will say it again; he talked about the school-leaving age rising, although it has not yet officially happened. Anyone who looks up in HANSARD what he said will see that what I have said is strictly correct. I will not continue. I am sure that if he had had more time we should have been told about votes at 18 and the arrival of a man on the moon—all brought in to help the Government.

Mr. Lawson

The hon. Member knows very well that I was talking about the number of boys and girls staying at school beyond the age of 15.

Mr. Campbell

I thank the hon. Member. That is exactly what I said. It was an entertaining performance and it was considerate of the hon. Member, as we could only be onlookers.

Mr. George Willis (Edinburgh, East)

Quite right, too.

Mr. Campbell

But I doubt whether it helped the Government at all.

What is the Government's attitude? They have put down an Amendment today, and the first point which they make in it concerns the number of advance factories which have been built. I am surprised at that, because according to the Board of Trade's most recent information many of these factories in Scotland are standing empty. The latest count, given in an Answer on 10th November, was that 11 were standing empty in Scotland. It is all very well for the Government to measure the square feet of factory built, but what matters is whether the factories are being used. An empty factory provides no jobs.

The second point in the Amendment refers to emigration and to the welcome improvement during the last year up to June. That fails to mention the extremely bad emigration figures just before that. If hon. Members look at the emigration figures over the last 12 years, they will see that total migration during the five years of this Government has been considerably more than the total emigration during the previous five years. I will give the right hon. Gentleman the figures: 193,000 under this Government and 167,000 in the previous five years. What is particularly important is that the two worst years, 1966 and 1967, are within the three years which we are discussing under the Motion. It is clear, therefore, that emigration accounted for some of the reduction in jobs which occurred during the period. We know where some of the people went who did not have jobs or who left jobs. We come to the reasons for the welcome improvement. I see the Secretary of State smiling. Of course the improved figures are welcome, but could it be, if we look for an explanation—

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. William Ross)

The hon. Member must not strain himself.

Mr. Campbell

I will not strain myself.

If we look for an explanation, could it be that it is known that there will be a change of Government before long? Is it not due to the fact that it is known that there will be a new attitude in Scotland—incentive to enterprise and effort, a chance to keep more of what people earn, and prospects of healthy industrial growth?

I am surprised that the Government referred to the advance factories and to emigration because neither offers them much comfort or much credit. What matters is the effectiveness of Government measures and whether a Government can create the climate and conditions for increasing modern industrial activity and expansion in Scotland.

We ask the Government to tell us plainly this evening the answer to some questions. Are they entirely content with the net loss of jobs over these three years? To what extent is this loss attributable to the selective employment tax? To what extent is it attributable to the failure of the growth rate which was proposed in the White Paper? That was based on the previous growth rate. If hon. Members look at page 20 of the White Paper they will read: The national average rage of growth of output during 1960–64 was achieved in Scotland, and output per head has been rising faster in Scotland than in the United Kingdom as a whole. To realise the objectives for the future, recent rates of growth must be sustained and increased. The Government referred to the 1960–64 rates and said that it was essential to sustain them. These rates have palpably not been sustained.

We ask the Government, would they be happy if such a rate of loss of jobs continued? Would they be happy if in the following three years there was a further net loss of 60,000 jobs in Scotland? This is a cause for anxiety. It is timely that the Government should give explanations of what has happened in the recent past and an assessment of the present and the future.

7.39 p.m.

The Minister of State, Scottish Office (Dr. J. Dickson Mahon)

I beg to move, to leave out from "House" to the end of the Question and to add instead thereof: congratulates Her Majesty's Government on their achievements in the completion in the four years 1965 to 1968 of factories which in Moor space were 25 per cent. greater than in the preceding four years, and 36 per cent greater than in the preceding four years in terms of the jobs they were expected to provide, in reducing migration from Scotland to the lowest level for 10 years, and in narrowing the gap between Scotland and the United Kingdom in average weekly earnings of adult male workers in manufacturing to 2.4 per cent. compared with 7.3 per cent. in 1964". Naturally, I am both surprised and grateful to hon. Members opposite for the persistence with which they keep presenting us with better and better opportunities of explaining to them the error of their ways. That was well demonstrated by the fact that the hon. Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. Gordon Campbell) asked me whether the figures we gave of jobs gained had been achieved. Actually, they refer to two years before the end of the White Paper period, so, of course, they have been achieved.

At the same time, this debate gives us the chance of giving a regular bulletin on the progress of the Scottish economy. It has all been having its effect. We have been having encouraging Scottish surveys in The Times and the Financial Times—not exactly organs of Socialist revolution. On the particular issue of jobs gains and losses, we have had since the Adjournment debate on 24th November, for which we are grateful to my hon. Friend the Member for Motherwell (Mr. Lawson), support in the Glasgow Herald, the Scotsman and, indeed, in television commentary. All have it right. Everyone, it would seem has it right by now except hon. Members opposite, including "oor Jock", who persists in staring with a rabbit-like concentration on one point, like watching the white dot on the television as it is switched off.

So I am grateful for this further opportunity—and at their expense this time—for explaining the facts of Scotland's rapidly strengthening position. I appreciate their generosity, even if it is a little belated, in providing time for me to complete the admirable account of our list of achievements which I was reciting with such conviction and force when I was brought to an untimely end by the clock a fortnight ago.

The particular complaint the Opposition have focused on with such persistence is one four-year-old estimate which was certainly not a critical part of the White Paper they are so anxious to have rewritten. When one considers how far-seeing and accurate that White Paper has been in all its essentials, how it has proved to be the spring-board of a genuine Scottish economic resurgence, it is difficult to blame them for wanting it swept under the carpet as soon as possible.

I can understand that it is an embarrassment to them to have it there as a constant reminder that the present Goverment have made a reality of regional development; something more than a token gesture to the less-well-favoured areas while the more prosperous continue to have it so good.

The present Government have made regional development a factor to be taken into account through the whole structure of economic planning, not because we have seen it as a charitable handout to the needy—although we are far from indifferent to their condition—but because we have grasped the essential truth about it: that it is as vital to the continued prosperity of the country as a whole as it is to the South West, the North East, to Scotland, Wales and the rest.

As hon. Members will have seen from recent reports of the E.E.C. visit to this country to study our methods and results, Europe is also wakening up now to the realisation that regional development is not an extra but a fundamental part of economic planning.

Mr. Ian MacArthur (Perth and East Perthshire)

If the hon. Gentleman says that the employment forecast was not a critical part of the White Paper, why does the Scottish Office Press statement accompanying that Paper open with the headline "More Jobs"?

Dr. Mabon

Because a part of a part is not the whole part. The hon. Gentleman wants to concentrate on one aspect of one part.

However, let me develop my speech. I know that the hon. Gentleman is fair about these things and that he will listen carefully to what I have to say, when he will then change his mind.

I want to make quite clear what it is hon. Members opposite are saying. Behind the specific complaints of lost jobs, the real truth of the charge is that the Scottish economy is faltering, that it is not in good shape, that it is not modernising itself, that it is not undergoing the fundamental regeneration it needs to take its place in the forefront of the international economic field.

If we are to discuss these issues meaningfully we have to be clear about the economic environment in which we have had to operate. I am not just referring to the periods of international monetary difficulties, the problems that have beset and in some cases are increasingly besetting European economies other than our own, both the weak and the strong.

Nor are we debating this evening the problems of the British economy as a whole, or analysing the reasons why, with the inheritance to which we succeeded, we were faced from the start with a grim battle for economic survival. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."] Hon. Members opposite groan. They may well do so, for they created this situation to a large extent.

There is one basic fact which illumines the whole picture. In previous crises Scotland was among those most keenly exposed to the cold winds of constraint. Under the Tories, when England had 'flu Scotland had peneumonia. This time—for the first time—in a severe period of national and international difficulty and as a direct result of deliberate and vigorous Government measures of regional development, Scotland has not been asked to bear more than she reasonably could or to put aside fundamental measures essential to her recovery.

As a result—I repeat for the first time—she has actually improved her position relative to the rest of the economy. That is by any standard quite remarkable.

Mrs. Winifred Ewing (Hamilton)

Will the hon. Gentleman explain why he is able to say that, when he knows that he does not have the basic facts about Scotland's economy?

Dr. Mabon

I have never heard of Eve rebuking Adam, but there we are.

May I remind the hon. Lady of the position? The White Paper set seven major objectives for the economy: first, the progressive creation of new and better paid jobs with higher productivity; second, the modernisation of our industrial structure; third, the reduction of emigration; fourth, an enlarged programme of training and retraining; fifth, a massive programme of investment in houses, in roads, in new towns, in schools, in water and sewerage, in universities, in hospitals, in power stations, and many other things.

Mrs. Ewing rose

Dr. Mabon

No. I cannot give way again. The hon. Lady must learn to be a democrat and listen to someone els's point point of view.

The sixth was an onslaught on slum housing, and, seventh the sweeping away of industrial dereliction.

These were real objectives setting real aims for attainment. They were goals for quite practical economic advances that would reflect—and this is the point of economic advance—in the improvement of the social and economic condition of the Scottish people.

In practice, the rundown of jobs has been very much faster than anyone foresaw—even, with respect, in that snippet of a television commentary to which the hon. Gentleman lays claim, but which we cannot find in the record. Perhaps he will find it for us. He has never quoted a figure. If he had quoted a figure he would have been the only one of all the commentators brave enough to say that our rundown was an underestimate. However we have come through that—

Mr. Gordon Campbell

It was the figure for the rundown over the previous four years. Surely the safest thing would be to assume that it would continue at the same rate.

Dr. Mabon

If the right hon. Gentleman will look at his own commentaries he will find that he said the same thing about jobs gained. This trying to be wise after the event and seeking to go back over vague references at the time of the White Paper is wrong. If he had given a figure and had said that it was to be 100,000, what a magnificently impregnable position he would be in. In fairness to him, nobody else did. No economic commentator came forward with the great argument saying that we should double or treble the figure.

The reading of all the important indicators is good, and in many the best, in years. Of course, there have been job losses and they have been severe. There has, in fact, been a faster than anticipated rundown of manpower in certain industries traditionally important in the Scottish economy such as coalmining, rail transport, marine engineering, railway locomotion, wagon manufacture and agriculture. We keep asking hon. Members opposite, and they keep evading an answer, whether they would have reversed this process. Would they keep the numbers up artificially?

The hon. Gentleman dismissed this as of no consequence; it happened before the Government came to power—

Mr. Gordon Campbell rose

Dr. Mabon

I did not interrupt the hon. Gentleman while he was speaking. We must allow some time in this debate for other hon. Members as well as Front Bench Members to speak. The assumption is that the hon. Gentleman will not keep labourers on the land will not let tractors rust at the side of the fields.

Mr. Gordon Campbell

The hon. Gentleman knows that I do not interrupt unnecessarily. He has got my argument completely wrong—100 per cent. wrong. I said that agriculture was modernising in 1960–64 and that this modernisation was bound to continue. The same applies to the coal mining industry; 127,000 jobs disappeared in four years. This applies to agriculture, coal mining and the sort of industries which the hon. Gentleman has mentioned. There was no reason suddenly to suppose that this would stop, which is what the Government appeared to do.

Dr. Mabon

It is not true I was about to say that I agreed with the hon. Member except for the last bit, because it has not stopped. The Government never claimed that it would stop. The difference between the hon. Gentleman and w is that we accept that the rate of the rundown in these two respects was faster than we expected and faster than he expected. We do not deny that it is happening. This has been shown by a very sober analysis which has been conducted not by people in the Labour Party, but by the commentators I have mentioned.

I must ask whether it is the opinion of the Opposition that that was wrong, that the Government should have stepped in and shored up these industries to get the figure which we had promulgated in the White Paper. If not, hon. Members opposite must accept that the rundown was inevitable, although they, like us, could not forecast its exact size.

So far as I know, no one would actually advocate that we should not have had this rundown and kept the poorer-paid jobs. To give him credit, tonight the hon. Member has at least grasped the fact that we are not replacing job for job inasmuch as we are replacing with a higher standard of job jobs which were previously poorly paid.

If the Opposition imply that we should slow it down, are they implying that it is job opportunities of which we are short? What do they make of the fact that demand for skilled engineering workers—and what better case than that is there—is already 50 to 60 per cent. higher this year than it was last year?

I have already explained to the House several times before, and I have done it again tonight, that two years before the end of the period in question we are well up to time, with job gains at 118,000 already achieved out of our promised figure of 134,000. Will the hon. Member be initiating a debate some time next year, or in 1971, when he is in opposition once again, and telling us that the Government deserve full congratulations for getting more than 134,000 jobs in that period, or will he be complaining that we have not reached the higher figure which he had in mind, which as yet he has not told us about, but which he thinks we should have achieved by the end of 1970? We shall wait and see.

The increase in job opportunities has been widely spread over a variety of manufacturing and service industries and reflects the high level of industrial development certificate approvals and completions in recent years, not just advance factories. If we are to bandy figures, the area of approvals in 1965–68 was at a level which is double the average for the years 1961–64. Completions in the years 1965–68 are expected, when fully manned, to provide, according to estimates given by industrialists, more than 60,000 new jobs. My right hon. Friend intends to touch on this matter towards the end of the debate and to confute hon. Members opposite.

Thus, the positive contribution of new forms of employment, one of the most vital parts of the forecast, which cannot be ignored as part of the subject of the debate, has worked out well, significantly better than we stated in the White Paper, and this is the part which the Government have, at least to some extent, had under their own hand. If we deny ourselves the right to slow down the rundown, of course we have to push on all the harder to create new jobs.

It is not just the number of new jobs, but the quality which matters and nothing indicates this more quickly than earnings. Here, again, the story is the same. The gap in average weekly earnings between Scotland and the United Kingdom as a whole for adult male manual workers in manufacturing industry has fallen to less than 2½ per cent. I hope that the Scottish Nationalist Party will put that on record instead of the other figures which it keeps putting forward. We shall not be content until the gap has disappeared completely, but it has fallen significantly in the period 1964–68. In engineering and electrical goods, earnings in Scotland are nearly 26s. above the U.K. average—coming from Hamilton, the hon. Lady should know that—and in electronics they are touching 58s. above, in marine engineering nearly £1 higher, and so on.

That is why emigration tells the same story. It is not, as is so easily assumed, the unemployed who emigrates; it is the young and the skilled, the young energetic man who may have a job, but who, because of lack of job opportunity, finds that that job is too often less than his capacity warrants, or is below his potential earning power. It is in these circumstances that the young and the skilled emigrate. Directly, the lack of job opportunities is reflected in emigration as it is in unemployment. As the House knows by this time, emigration from Scotland continues to fall, and the Secretary of State will develop this later.

The unemployment ratio, which the Opposition in their time found intractable at more than twice the Great Britain rate during their long period of office, is now down to about one and a half times that rate. So the fact is that emigration is down and the ratio is down. The hon. Member for South Angus (Mr. Bruce-Gardyne) used to be good at ratios, but he has obviously missed out on this one.

Mr. J. Bruce-Gardyne (South Angus)

The main reason why the ratio has gone down is that the English rate has gone up.

Dr. Mabon

It has gone down, whatever the reasons may be. The hon. Gentleman cannot interrupt so as to contradict me, but then proceed to give reasons why it has gone down. We could develop that argument at some other time, but the fact is that it has gone down. That fits neatly with the position about emigration. Let us not assume that emigration falls by accident. If that were true, none of us would have any policies to deal with it. Emigration falls because of definite causes and definite policies, and we are pursuing those policies successfully.

In addition to external assistance given to firms in development areas which undertake training, the Government have greatly increased the number of places available in Government training centres, from 400 in 1964 to about 1,400 in nine centres at present. The potential throughput of these centres is 2,300 men a year.

On slum clearance, between 1961 and 1964, 48,000 houses were "taken out of use" as the Act says; between 1965 and 1968 we dealt with 70,000 houses.

On industrial dereliction, since 1964, 71 schemes have been completed and grants amounting to £1.8 million have been paid. We are committed to an expenditure of about £4.5 million on schemes to be completed over the next five years or so.

I have tried to deal with the progress on seven of the major objectives which we set ourselves. My right hon. Friend will have more to say about the others, on investment, for example, which I omitted to mention. These seven successes are the facts on which to fasten, not one gloomy facet of one single set of figures.

The Opposition are like the babes lost in the wood—all they can see is one tree. Bark as they will, they are up the wrong tree.

Mr. Deputy Speaker (Mr. Sydney Irving)

I would remind hon. Members of Mr. Speaker's appeal for short speeches.

8.0 p.m.

Miss Harvie Anderson (Renfrew, East)

I am glad to have the opportunity of speaking in this important debate, but I do not think that it would serve the cause of Scotland best if we used statistics to condemn or condone one another. I am concerned with the effect upon the economy both of the jobs that exist and the jobs in the pipeline. We are seriously concerned at a net reduction in jobs. We should not fall into the trap of accepting jobs of any kind or at any price. I know that there will be unanimous agreement on that.

I want to see greater concentration on jobs that will help the economy and therefore create prosperity. Several of the great firms in and near my constituency and many of my constituents contribute to the prosperity of our country. They succeed in creating competitive goods for export, well able to compete in the home market.

Ironically, they are hampered by three things. The first is by the difficulties encountered in increasing their labour force, both skilled and semi-skilled. Secondly, they are hampered by the restrictions on the employment of the retrained because, although the Minister of State has given the figure, 2,300 people, he did not break the numbers down nor did he give us the places. Unless we have these things it is impossible to judge the effectiveness even of that very small scheme.

Thirdly, they are being hampered by the rejection of agreements based on modern job evaluation techniques, designed to create better wage and productivity rates and competitive prices. If wages go up and productivity remains static, sooner or later we shall be priced out of the market. The shipbuilders and boiler makers, the car industry and the aero-engine industry is affected. This has been a crucial factor in central Scotland recently.

There is a Luddite attitude which seeks to defy progress and lean on the State. If allowed to go unchecked it will ultimately cause collapse. We cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong and yet there are certain parts of industry in Scotland where just that is happening. Let us look at one or two examples. We need welders and platers. It would probably be an under-estimate if I put the figure at 1,000 on Clydeside alone. As each man is employed, other jobs are automatically created. As the hon. Gentleman knows better than I do, in that area for every single apprenticeship advertised, five boys apply. If that is not a tragedy for the future of Scotland, I do not know what is.

In Government and other pre-training centres, is the hon. Gentleman satisfied that there are sufficient places for the right trades and the right men in sufficient numbers? Does he think that the rate of trade union acceptance is right? New projects are very relevant to this subject. Whatever we accept, let us not, in doing so, weaken the prospects. The new projects must not be endangered by short term employment from long term job industries. The construction industry alone is hampered by S.E.T., which costs it £22 million, by British Standard Time, £35 million, and is 10,000 men below strength. It has a huge housing and social needs programme to meet.

Every project on the Clyde will require a huge construction force and the question is for how long and, more important, how many? Long-term job employment should not be endangered by short term prospects. There is sound sense in regional policy, but not at any price. Will these huge forces required for the construction projects be recruited from the jobless or from the stable industries by very high and temporary wage rates? If that happens those who left the stable industries will find that their jobs will no longer be there when they wish to return.

Finally, I would turn to some of our statisticians and put them on to the hard task of job planning. The Scottish Planning Board has done some work, but much more needs doing. Once a man is jobless it is too late.

8.6 p.m.

Mr. Richard Buchanan (Glasgow, Springburn)

The hon. Member for Renfrew, East (Miss Harvie Anderson) has said that we must not condemn or condone with statistics. She has spoken of jobs, but not jobs at any price. I would probably not be here if it were not for the indifference of a Tory Government. I had to leave school when my father died. I had no option at all. I was lucky to get an apprenticeship, but when it was finished I had no job to go to. Instead there was the indignity of unemployment, going three times a week to sign on at the labour exchange. I would have been heartily glad of any job that a Government could have given me, no matter what the price. The matter of Luddites which she also raised can be dealt with more appropriately next Tuesday. The further point of the hon. Lady—the training and retraining of men and women is important.

The training and retraining of skilled men and women must redound to the benefit of the Government. The Government have speeded up the programme of training and retraining immeasurably since they came into office. The hon. Ladys' complaint is that no matter how much we are doing it is still not enough. The labour required now is much more skilled than hitherto. In 1960 a journalist in Glasgow wrote a pamphlet entitled, "A Nation of Labourers." That is what the Tory Party was creating in Scotland. Much greater skills are required now in this new Scotland.

One could be forgiven for assuming, listening to hon. Gentlemen opposite, that the Scottish economy was constantly running downhill. It might be thought that a visitor to Scotland would find Scots tottering about in tattered kilts. It is completely untrue. The Scottish people gave their answer to that kind of talk in 1964 and 1966. What is happening now in Scotland? Do not take my word for it, take the word of The Scotsman, which is not at all favourable to the Labour Government. It points out that the nation is pulling itself out of the dumps into which hon. Members opposite put us.

Mr. Ian MacArthur


Mr. Buchanan

There is no doubt that my right hon. Friends are determined to succeed in their task. The chronic problems of Scotland are responding to the combined efforts of the Government and industry. Economically the country is on the move. Our greatest single problem is a geographical one. The beauties and grandeur of the Highlands and Islands and of the Borders are great tourist attractions, but they have had the inevitable consequence of forcing 4 million of the 5 million Scots to live in the central belt. Hon. Gentlemen opposite have made no effort to correct this imbalance. The heavy concentration of the industry in the central belt has added greatly to the problem. There was a lack of amenities and housing surely being rectified. All of this stems from the fact that we were in the forefront of the Industrial Revolution. Scotland's reputation and prosperity was built almost entirely around the heavy industry and hon. Gentlemen opposite did nothing to correct this imbalance.

Remembering James Watt with his engine, John Neilston with his blast furnace, the great hinterland of the Lanarkshire coalfield, it was inevitable that we were in the vanguard of the industrial revolution but also that we were left with the heavy end. The great ships which sail from the Clyde were constructed to the music and the clang of heavy machinery.

My constituency is caught in a similar trap. It was paramount in the locomotive industry. The great works of the North British Locomotive Company, which were world famous, have lain derelict since 1954, a monument to the indifference and neglect of hon. Gentlemen opposite. My constituency became an industrial desert—

Miss Harvie Anderson

Am I not correct in saying that the Administration in those days heavily subsidised the works in the hon. Member's constituency but that they then failed?

Mr. Buchanan

They still closed. [HON. MEMBERS: "Ah."] Is this the hon. Members' eulogy of private enterprise since 1956?

Miss Anderson

There comes a point when one stops subsidising.

Mr. Buchanan

Of course, but the Motion refers to the net reduction in employment opportunities. What opportunities were left to the boys in Spring-burn? The British Railways works closed—

Miss Anderson: Rootes.

Mr. Buchanan

Without direct Government intervention to allow them to associate themselves with Chrysler, Rootes' great expansion might never have taken place. But Rootes is 10 miles from Springburn. There is also the British Railways works at Cowlairs. What plans do they have for Cowlairs? A British Petroleum Tanker farm was to be constructed there with about one job per acre—53 acres, 53 men. The Labour Administration in Glasgow stopped that. Frederick Braby's, the great galvanised sheet metal works, died. What employment opportunity existed for Springburn and Townhead people then? The chemical works and the cable works and the Saracen Foundry closed. Where are the opportunities which hon. Gentlemen created? Is this their type of employment opportunity?

What do people in my hon. Friend's constituency of Govan say about the reduction of employment opportunities in Scotland, when they think of the work in the shipbuilding yards? One may talk about the Japanese, the Swedes and the Germans building ships, but the latest report of the Geddes Committee and the setting up of the Shipbuilding Industry Board did not come quickly enough for the industry on the Clyde, and in most of Britain.

I, with some of my hon. Friends, made representations to the Department about Upper Clyde Shipbuilders, and one or two hon. Gentlemen opposite jumped on the bandwagon a few days later. But, without direct Government intervention and the stimulus given by this Government, what would have been the employment opportunities for Clydeside people? This is what hon. Gentlemen opposite must answer. There is no sense talking in and statistics; they are there for all to see. In one of our election manifestos, we said, "The road ahead will not be easy, and anyone who pretends that it is is dishonest". One can never accuse this Government of being dishonest. We had twin problems—to set the economy right and to modernise industry. To the consternation of hon. Gentlemen opposite, the economy is coming right. The modernisation is taking place. Although many people are being displaced and temporarily inconvenienced, there is no doubt that industry is being modernised.

I have one complaint to make to my right hon. Friend. Regardless of what this Government are doing, there was an election in the Mile End ward of Glasgow—a 100 per cent. working-class ward—in which a Progressive Conservative candidate was successful. The Nationalist came second, and we were bottom of the poll. There is a lesson here for my right hon. Friend. He must tell the Scottish people what he is doing: this is his duty. There is no sense in telling us in the House. It is not publicised anywhere but in HANSARD, apart from a few paragraphs here and there in the quality newspapers.

But of the people in Mile End, some of them, voted Tory, or Progressive, whatever it might be. Others threw their votes into the wastepaper basket of Nationalism. My right hon. Friend fails in his duty if he does not let the people whom he represmts know what he is doing.

I have no doubt that Scotland is well on the way and that we will be given another chance to complete the job which we have started. I am unfortunately less sure about my Sassenach colleagues. But I appeal to my right hon. Friend to let his voice be heard and to let the people of Scotland know what is being done. Scotland expects that we at least will tell them what he is doing.

8.17 p.m.

Mr. James Davidson (Aberdeenshire, West)

The Minister of State and the Shadow Secretary of State vied with each other to score laughs tonight and proved that the music hall is not dead in Scotland. But this is a serious question and not a question of disaster or glorious successes. It is a question of degrees of failure. This Government may have done better than the Tories, but they have not achieved what they said they would, and they could have achieved much more if they had used the right approach.

Nevertheless, my colleagues and I will be supporting the Motion in the name of the Shadow Secretary of State, for reasons which I hope to show have sound support. We also regret the net reduction of jobs in Scotland. We believe that the forecasts of the White Paper published in January 1966 were thoroughly misleading. We would even conclude that the Government's policies have fallen far short of their own expectations.

There are many examples of this. One is the closure of the Border Railway. About 200 jobs were lost and the Government did nothing to replace them. I hope that I shall be forgiven if I quote an example from my own constituency which has been aired before—the closure of the locomotive works in Inverurie and what that has done for one of Scotland's small burghs. I am not entirely blaming the Secretary of State or the Minister of State. They are just pawns, I believe, in the hands of the Treasury: they simply do what they are told. But never has there been a clearer case of Government responsibility than in the burgh of Inverurie, or a clearer case of Government failure to take that responsibility.

A year ago there were something like 580 men employed at the locomotive works, over half the male employed population of the Burgh of Inverurie. Now there are about 100. On 26th December, those 100 will be declared redundant. Hon. Members need not look at the unemployment figures for the Inverurie district, because they will not tell the story. Nine out of ten of those men have had to go away from the burgh to find jobs. Some of them—the lucky ones—have found them in Aberdeen, where they can travel back and forth, but many more—I have met them on the station platform at Aberdeen—have had to go down to Derby and further away. Others have gone to South Africa and elsewhere abroad. [AN HON. MEMBER: "To South Africa?"] Yes, to South Africa, because there are jobs there on the railways and when men want to work on the railways they cannot choose the kind of Government under which they work.

Mr. Archie Manuel (Central Ayrshire)

I am astonished at the hon. Member's announcement that he is tonight supporting the Tories because of our record. Did he compare the Tory record? I was one of the victims who had to move from Scottish railways, even before Beeching, owing to redundancy, down to Plaistow in London.

Mr. Davidson

At the opening of my speech I said that the present Government had done better than the previous one, but I am illustrating an example of a very bad failure. [Interruption.] I am sorry that I did not hear that remark from the Secretary of State. Perhaps he will repeat it when he winds up the debate. I would like to refer him to the White Paper which was published in January, 1966. This is why I say that there is a clear Government responsibility in this matter, because that White Paper, wherever the fault crept in—I am not blaming individuals for this—stated clearly that there was a long-term future for this notably efficient locomotive works in the Burgh of Inverurie.

Early in November last year, before I went with an all-party delegation to the United Nations in New York, I went to see the Secretary of State. I had heard through the kindness of an hon. Member opposite what was likely to happen in Inverurie. He had warned me. I had suspected for a long time that this was coming.

I went to see the Secretary of State and tried to find out what was being done to overcome the impending disaster. I was told—this is significant, because it was the line that was pursued throughout the following months leading up to the climax when finally the works were closed—that I must not make too much of this in publicity and that I must not expose the facts, because if I did that would force the Railways Board into a corner and it would thereby be compelled to close the works earlier than it otherwise would. I accepted this. I think now that perhaps I was wrong to do so.

In any event, when I returned from the United Nations in New York, the story had broken in the Press. That was nothing to do with me. I still do not know to this day how the story came out. The whole sad story unfolded over the ensuing months. What, in effect, were the Government prepared to do? They were prepared to spend £5,000, the price of two three-room council houses, on a publicity campaign. The results have been negative in the extreme.

It is claimed that a small electronics firm which, I believe, has a promising future was one of the side effects of that publicity campaign for jobs. The Minister of State forgets, I think, that that firm was in Inverurie long before news of the closure of the Inverurie locomotive works ever hit the Press headlines. That electronics firm was sitting there in a small works by the railway bridge in Inverurie long before and it would have expanded in one direction or another sooner or later, quite separate and distinct from what has happened at the locomitive works.

It was suggested that the intention of another small firm to come m and build a factory there—which, again, is extremely welcome—was a result of the publicity campaign. I do not know whom to believe, because I am told by somebody whose word I trust, a member of the Inverurie Town Council, that this has arisen entirely out of a local initiative and has nothing whatever to do with the Government's publicity campaign. Nevertheless, it is welcome.

When it comes to real action to assist Inverurie, what were the Government prepared to do? Were they prepared, for example, to make Inverurie into a special development area? No, they were not. I will quote from a letter from the Minister of State, written on 9th October this year, when he said that the possibility of designating Inverurie as a special development area had been carefully examined but the conclusion reached had been that this was not justified"— he did not say why—then the Minister of State informed me that special development area status is intended to meet the problems of areas affected by rundown in the coalmining industry. I know that rundown in coalmining can have devastating effects on whole areas, but so can the rundown of other important basic industries. Perhaps in writing that letter the Minister of State ignored the fact that the locomotive works in Inverurie was by far the biggest single employer in the area. There is only one other and much smaller factory in the town.

Again, in answer to a Question, when I pursued the matter with the Minister of Technology, I was told that The Government does not consider that the circumstances of Inverurie justify its designation as a special development area."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 22nd October, 1969; Vol. 788, c. 287.] Then there was the matter of a very promising engineering firm, the only firm, so far as I know—I had great difficulty sometimes in getting information about what was going on behind the scenes—which went so far as to put forward a carefully thought out three-year plan for taking over the works. Admittedly, it did not propose to involve itself deeply financially to begin with, but it was, in my view and in the view of several others, a solid basis for the Government to come in and use their powers under the Industrial Expansion Act—powers which they had given themselves to provide the necessary bridging finance and action—to tide over the period between the rundown of the locomotive works and the incoming of the firm. That proposal, however, was thrown out of the window. I was told that the Government had examined the proposal but that they did not consider that it offered a practical basis for an industrial investment scheme. That was in answer to a Question on 1st April, 1969.

Again, I was told that the Government had already made it clear that they were prepared to look at any proposition in connection with the Industrial Expansion Act, but, apparently, not to do any more than simply look at it. I then had a letter dated 26th November this year from the Minister of Technology in which he said that it had been decided after careful examination that the proposal did not form a basis for a scheme under the Industrial Development Act.

I come back to my original accusation. This is not the fault of the Secretary of State, the Minister of State, or even the Minister of Technology. This is directly tied up with the Treasury. It is the Treasury which has the final say and I suggest that the Secretary of State and the Minister of State are merely pawns in its hands.

Yet apparently the Government were prepared to spend millions of pounds, are prepared to spend millions of pounds at this very time, and to use compulsory purchase orders, elsewhere in the United Kingdom, and even in a place where the local people do not want it. I am referring to the Milton Keynes Development Corporation about which I have been given some information.

I should like to quote from a letter I received from the managing director of this engineering firm which has been rejected. It says: I must thank you for the very great endeavours you have made to establish some mode of operation whereby we could have assisted, but, as you know only too well, the whole project has been handled so incompetently by the powers that be that I feel it will be a very long time before this firm again enters into such a frustrating experience. I suggest, then, with this example I am giving, that the Government's efforts were largely window dressing.

I have a letter here from the Regional Development Division in St. Andrews House soon after the publicity campaign was launched to bring employment to Inverurie. It says: There has been an encouraging response to the letters and publicity material about Inverurie which was sent to a large number of firms. At least ten positive enquiries relating specifically to development at Inverurie have emerged, about half from firms whose plans could involve taking over projects taking over the whole of the workshops and employing a large proportion of the existing work force. It is worth noting that in the case of almost all of these inquirers, their interest has been attracted by the existence of a large skilled labour force in the town. a point I have put to the Government over and over again.

In answer to a Question on 9th May the Secretary of State told me—and I think this is a measure of the information which I was given all along while this controversy raged— It would not be proper to reveal the nature of the inquiries in respect of industrial development at Inverurie which are being handled in complete confidence."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 9th May, 1969; Vol. 783, c. 139.] Apparently, I could not be trusted, but often the way to ensure trust is to trust people; if they are trusted perhaps they will not betray the trust; but, quite obviously, if they are not given information they will use whatever means they have to discover what they can. Most of the information I obtained about what firms were interested in the locomotive works at Inverurie I received from men on the shop floor within the locomotive works.

There was this firm, Marshall and Anderson, who, I believe, make boilers, and I believe they were, and may be still, interested in the locomotive works at Inverurie. This firm was constantly held out as Inverurie's Valhalla, the answer to all Inverurie's problems just around the corner. When I asked the Minister of State why no time limit had been placed on the offer which was made to this firm by the British Railways Board I never got a satisfactory reply. I would be interested to know why no time limit was placed, because while the time seeped away there, men left Inverurie, and so the labour force gradually disintegrated until the main attraction of Inverurie as an industrial town to which industrialists might be attracted was utterly undermined, because the skilled and semi-skilled engineering labour force, which the letter I have just quoted from one Government Department said was the main attraction to any incoming industry, had dispersed and disappeared. So now Inverurie simply has to take its chance along with a hundred or more other small burghs with their individual attractions throughout the length and breadth of Scotland, and, indeed, other parts of the United Kingdom.

Dr. Dickson Mahon

I can understand why the hon. Gentleman feels so aggrieved and is telling us these unfortunate facts of the situation—not that they are completely so, but, still, they are unfortunate—but why does he say that the industrial fabric of the town is utterly destroyed? We intend to make sure that Inverurie will develop. We have an advance factory there, and industrial land. Two firms, possibly a third, are coming in, and the Gaskin Report shows that it must be developed. Surely the hon. Gentleman wants to help us to help it develop?

Mr. Davidson

Of course I do. The Minister of State knows that I went a very long way to try to help, and that I did a great many things off my own bat, and on a number of occasions I kept quiet when I should have liked to have spoken out. I was not referring specifically to the industrial structure of the whole town. I was referring to the ready-made engineering labour force in a particular industrial unit.

May I continue? Perhaps the Minister remembers going to the shop floor in Inverurie and referring to me as a very naive innocent. Those were his words simply because I was pursuing the claims of this particular engineering firm which I believed had great prospects.

In a letter of 11th March to the Minister of State, I suggested that the piecemeal dissection of this industrial unit would mean the loss of the main attraction to any incoming industrialist. I went on to say that of the representatives of three firms that had already inspected the works only one had retained any interest. I put it to him that, although there was an element of risk attached to the proposals which had been submitted to the British Railways Board, nevertheless, the firm had an encouraging growth potential and worldwide marketing facilities, and I said: In my view Inverurie is unlikely to get any better proposition. Events have, unfortunately, proved me right.

In a letter of 2nd April, 1969—and perhaps the House might like to ask who is the naive innocent—I wrote to the Clerk of the North East Scotland Development Committee: I was a little dismayed on Friday at the way in which those attending the meeting at the Town Hall, Inverurie, allowed themselves to be talked into subjection by [the Minister of State's] well-known oratorical skill. I would like to make the following points to your Committee. [The Minister of State] is just the Government's front man…". Perhaps I should have used the word "troubleshooter", it might have been more apt— …in Scotland. Neither he nor his wingers from the Board of Trade and Ministry of Transport have any real power to bring industry to Inverurie. The real power rests with the D.E.A., the Treasury and B.O.T.A.C. If the Government is allowed to get off the hook (and all my efforts over the past four months have had three simple objectives—to put the Government on the hook, to publicise the Inverurie situation, and to keep the work force together) they may well turn round in six months' time and say, 'Sorry, nobody bought the workshops, but there are only 150 employees now left so you have no real problem'. I suggest that this is roughly the position today, and that £5,000 for a publicity scheme is the very least that Inverurie should expect, from the Government, in view of their promises. We should look for something much more substantial if it is necessary to bridge the gap between the British Railways rundown and a takeover by an incoming industry. I continued: A nice, cosy, 'all in this together' attitude by the Government, local authorities and your Committee will undoubtedly suit the Government admirably. It will enable them to share out the blame if nothing very exciting comes out of the publicity campaign. I, for one, fear that the chances of some industry coming forward to take over the workshops and the work force, lock, stock and barrel, is unlikely. Under the Industrial Expansion Act 1968 the Government gave themselves all the necessary financial and other powers. It remains to be seen whether they will use them. Of course, the Government did not use them, and events have proved me right.

I must watch the time, but I believe that hon. Members on this side will agree that this is perhaps one of the best examples of Government failure that we have had—

Mr. Lawson

Is not the hon. Gentleman a Liberal? Will he tell us since when the Liberal Party has stood for the State accepting all the responsibility about which he is talking?

Mr. Davidson

If the hon. Member will look back in HANSARD he will see that we supported the Act. I do not think he requires any further answer.

In March this year, in a discussion with the county clerk, the Provost and a member of the Board of British Railways, I suggested the possibility of a take-over of the whole works, either by the Board 01 Trade or by the county council, and their development as an industrial estate. When the county council made an offer early in July it was rejected and not used even as a basis for negotiation. Whether this was the fault of the Board or of the Government, I have no idea. The date was 4th July, if the Minister of State is interested. It would have been much better if the Government had kept right out of it and left the development to the county council and to the clerk to the North East Development Committee.

I take this opportunity to pay tribute to the way in which the clerk to the North East Development Committee, who also is the county clerk, has acted rapidly and effectively to try to bring industry into Inverurie since the failure of the Government to remedy the situation. The labour force is now down to about 100. After Christmas it will no longer exist. If the Government had been a little more open, if they had not conducted the whole matter in secrecy by playing their cards close to their chests, perhaps we might have had a better result.

The Secretary of State is powerless to bring in new industry. He is unable to affect the rate of redundancies and unable to obtain a postponement of the closure. This has been shown by the facts. It may be true to say that the British Railways Board is in the hands of the unions to whom it has to pay attention and therefore has been unable to do what it would most like to do.

When I wrote a desperate letter to the Minister of State on 8th September just a few days before the first redundancies were declared it was several weeks before I even received an acknowledgment. By then the wheels had started to turn and it was too late.

Mr. Lawson

Is this a debate on Inverurie or a debate on employment in Scotland? Can we be given some guidance on this matter?

Mr. Deputy Speaker

The hon. Gentleman is in order in what he is saying, although it is being said at great length.

Mr. Davidson

It is about unemployment in Scotland and, in case the hon. Gentleman is not aware, Inverurie is in Scotland. I had reached the final point of my speech.

I am not trying to allocate blame and perhaps the Minister in his reply will allocate or disclaim the blame. It seems to me that a game of three-cornered pig in the middle has been played over this whole issue. The difference is that it is not a pig that is in the middle, but the work force of Inverurie. What has been pushed from corner to corner is the future employment, with which is tied the lives of those workers and that of their children, who are to be uprooted and moved to other parts of the country. The three corners in the game have been the Government, the British Railways Board and the unions.

There is a very strong feeling among union members in Inverurie that because they are a small element of their particular union they have to some extent been sold down the river for the benefit of the greater majority of that union in Glasgow and elsewhere. I have had this view clearly put to me by members of the union.

Mr. Buchanan

That is most unjust.

Mr. Davidson

Who, then, should bear the ultimate blame for this fiasco? Should it be the Secretary of State or the Treasury? I leave it to the House to judge. Here is one example where complete failure by the Government has resulted in the whole fabric of employment in a burgh in Scotland being completely disrupted.

8.44 p.m.

Mr. William Hannan (Glasgow, Maryhill)

The hon. Member for Aberdeenshire, West (Mr. James Davidson) has made a plea for his constituency. I can understand what he is doing, but he is due for some congratulation in succeeding as a spokesman for the Liberal Party on the strength of the one point which he has raised and in taking all of his time in making that point. I do not quarrel with the issue that he raised, but if that is the contribution of the Liberal Party in a debate of this kind I hope that it will be duly noted by the electorate.

I come back to the main point of the Motion. My hon. Friend the Minister of State has demolished the Opposition's case on two grounds. The first is the backlog that has dogged both parties when in power, embracing the problem of the rundown of the older industries. The second is the lack of initiative by the Conservative Party when in power, for which it must bear responsibility, in not initiating early enough the educational retraining courses in further training colleges in link-ups with schools and the linking of industry and the universities in industrial research.

This goes back to the years 1958 and 1959. I can recall my hon. Friends initiating debates on further education in which we pointed out that changes in industry concerning personnel would go over from the dungarees to the white coats. We used the Galbraith aphorism that unless industry learned to deal with science and maths, the alternative was to learn Russian. We urged the need for further training of young people.

In the past, concentration of capital and skills has been on older heavy industries—coal, iron, shipbuilding, heavy engineering, jute and wool. In the changeover to new modern industries I remind hon. Members of the size of the problem. Between 1946 and 1968 the number of coal miners was reduced from 90,000 to 43,000, the number of workers in shipbuilding and ship repairing reduced from 50,000 to 33,000 and in marine engineering from 21,000 to 10,000. There was also the effect on agriculture of mechanisation. The total reabsorbed in industry was 200,000. It stands to the credit of this Government that that has been done.

We are, of course, still left with the problem of restructuring Scottish industries. This has reduced the role of the older industries and relegated the need for the new type of industry which Scotland is now past acquiring. It calls for a restructuring—a word seldom used four or five years ago—and preparation of sites and services in readiness for the coming of new industries.

Apparently hon. Members opposite want to abandon the regional policies instituted by the present Government. Almost 10 per cent. of the population and 40 per cent. of the total grants which come from the Local Employment Acts goes to Scotland. It is a pity that the hon. Member for Hamilton (Mrs. Ewing) was not present to hear some of the facts which could enlighten her and some members of her party. Investment grants for industry have been doubled for areas such as Scotland. These have a clear advantage vis-à-vis other areas in England. Parts of Scotland which previously were excluded from receiving these grants, such as Galloway, are now included.

Public capital investment in 1966 to 1969 increased by over 50 per cent. compared with the previous three years. By any standard that is a vast increase and of course it affects job opportunities. Hon. Members opposite are making a mountain out of a molehill when they try to argue about a specific statement in a paragraph of a paper which generally in the event has been justified.

Alongside the deterioration in the heavy industries has been a crying need for training of manpower. We have been urging the need for diversification and innovation in technical engineering on more industrialists and there are clear signs of an improvement. In Strathclyde University there are 300 joint university-industry projects taking place. The great weakness is that Scottish industry is not taking advantage of the information being provided, by translating the ideas into commercial production.

A word now about mergers affecting Scottish industry, We do not hear much of the effect which the G.E.C./A.E.I. merger had, when jobs were lost in the South, but when there was a great advantage to places in Scotland.

Mr. R. W. Brown (Shoreditch and Finsbury)

My hon. Friend has hit a very pertinent point. About 6,000 jobs were lost in London, but we did not argue the case. We believed that it was right. I would remind him that when the railways were being run down it was Dr. Beeching who did it deliberately as part of Tory Party policy, to reduce the labour force. Where did the hon. Member for Aberdeenshire, West (Mr. James Davidson) think the labour force would be reduced, if not in his own area?

Mr. Hannan

I am grateful to my hon. Friend for that intervention.

As the character of industry changes the restructuring of industry requires new skills from men and women. The hon. Member for Renfrew, East (Miss Harvie Anderson) is the only hon. Member opposite who has so far grasped this point. Hon. Gentlemen opposite were pushed into forming Stirling University, but it has been left to this Government to make new strides in education.

In 1964, there were only four Government training centres in Scotland. That was our heritage. They were producing 400 trainees a year. Today, there are nine centres, producing 1,400 trainees a year, and another is due to be completed in Dundee. In the past three years training capacity in Scotland has trebled, whereas in the rest of the country it has only doubled. This is an indication of the Government's special concern for Scotland. Industry, too, is making a major contribution to the industrial training boards. There are now 25 operating in Scotland, training 12,500 people.

I am astonished that so many people in Scotland do not know that there is a shortage of skilled labour. Recently, employers were asked what attracted them to Scotland. The answers in order of importance were (a) availability of trainable manpower; (b) local authority co-operation; (c) Government grants. When they were asked what factors were restricting growth, strangely enough they came out with the same answer—the shortage of trained manpower. Only last week a modern factory on the Queenslie Estate, where there are good working conditions, had to close because of a shortage of woman-power. I am sure that that statement will be corroborated by hon. Friend the Member for Glasgow, Provan (Mr. Hugh D. Brown).

With fewer workers, the electricity industry is producing more power. With half the number of miners that there used to be a few years ago, coal production has been increased. Is it part of the Opposition's case that the future prosperity of Scotland is to be founded on the uneconomic use of labour in any sector of industry? I hope that the hon. Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. Gordon Campbell) will note my question and answer it, because a similar question was asked by his hon. Friend the Member for Renfrew, East. This increase in production is to be found even in those industries on which S.E.T. is levied. Despite S.E.T., the construction industry has improved its productivity with marginally fewer workers. What is the hon. Gentleman's answer to that?

I ask the House to consider the unemployment figure of 80,000. For many years the Scottish rate was twice that of the national average. Since 1966 it has fallen significantly, but still perhaps not as much as it should have done. The ratio is now 1½ to 1, and that is a very good figure when compared with the situation in any of the other 10 regions listed by the Department of Employment and Productivity. Has an analysis been made of this hard core of 80,000 people? Of whom does it consist? Does it include men and women? How long have they been unemployed?

In April, 1966 the "Ministry of Labour Gazette" published the results of a survey carried out by a working party on the manpower situation, and some remarkable facts were disclosed. For example, it said in its summary: The survey indicated that 60 per cent. of men wholly unemployed, claimants and non-claimants, would be difficult to place in a job on personal grounds. Nearly three-quarters of that category in turn were placed in this group because of their age or their physical or mental condition.

To support that, I propose to quote a statement made, not by any Socialist, nor even in a Socialist magazine, but by a redoubtable organisation, the Scottish Council for Industry and Development. In paragraph 17 of its submission to the First Secretary of State and Secretary of State for Economic Affairs it said: 85,000 people are registered as unemployed in Scotland. But only 28,000 of these were last employed in manufacturing and in a recent survey less than 6,000—in the whole of Scotland—are assessed by the Ministry of Labour as being immediately suitable for work in industry without retraining, or moving house. A few of these are skilled people. Of those unemployed who were engaged in non-manufacturing work, only a small proportion will be able to work in factories without retraining. The fault lies not on this side of the House, but on that.

Paragraph 19 of the same report states: While the shortage of skills bears particularly heavily upon the newer and fast-growing sections of industry, which require quite new kinds of skill, it also affects adversely a broad area of longer-established engineering and other industries. Hon. Members opposite who put down a Motion in such terms as these should pay attention to some of the facts of life. They remind me of the teacher of tender years who was trying to impart some elementary biology to her class of rather precocious 11 and 12-year-olds by using the example of bees and flowers, when one youngster, more knowing than the others, whispered to his friend, "You know, a woman come to her time of life—its high time someone told her the facts of life".

Hon. and right hon. Members opposite are in the same position. They come to certain conclusions, and then look for evidence to justify them.

9.1 p.m.

Mr. George Younger (Ayr)

It would no doubt be very convenient for hon. Members opposite if we were to discuss something quite different from the Motion, but I must bring the House back to the subject of the loss of jobs predicted originally by the Secretary of State in January, 1966, in Cmnd. 2864. I sometimes wonder whether the right hon. Gentleman has ever thought to himself of the field day he would have had if he had been in Opposition now and throwing the shortfall back at the Government of the day. Yet, as Secretary of State for Scotland, he has to compare a net gain of jobs in Scotland of over 30,000 in the years 1960–64 with his own dreadful and deplorable record of converting that gain into a net loss of about 35,000.

Listening to hon. Members opposite, and particularly to the hon. Member for Glasgow, Springburn (Mr. Buchanan), I almost began to think that perhaps this extraordinary reversal had nothing at all to do with the present Government; that it was not their fault. We were being invited to believe that by a most extraordinary coincidence, which had nothing at all to do with the present Government, there was a sudden change in 1964—[HON. MEMBERS "There was."]—about 14th or 15th October—and the change was from a net gain of jobs in the previous year to a net loss, as we now have.

It was a little unkind of the Secretary of State to make his hon. Friend the Minister of State reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. Gordon Campbell). Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman won the toss as to which of them should start and finish for the Government. I say that because although the Minister of State has many good qualities one of them is not speaking at the beginning of a debate. He said, speaking at very great speed, no doubt hoping that no one would notice, just how unfair it was to select this one minor fact in this White Paper—this question of jobs lost on which no one had ever placed emphasis—and make a big issue of it.

The Minister has obviously not been reading the words of his right hon. Friend who, in his introduction to the White Paper, said that the Government's plan …is to speed up the evolution of a modern industrial structure in Scotland, providing more jobs and stemming the outward flow of young Scots to the South. Then, suddenly, just before the election in 1966, this was produced with a great splash everywhere, telling people that more jobs would be produced by this Government. Now, that policy has failed, and is seen to have failed, and it is said to be a minor factor in which no one is interested.

But the Minister of State did not stop there. He said that not only was the jobs question irrelevant, but that everything in the White Paper—except the small matter of the jobs, which was unfortunate—had proved perfectly accurate. Is this so? On page 63, referring to housing, we read: The rate of house building will be increased with the initial aim of achieving a programme of about 50,000 houses a year by 1970. How accurate is that? The section on roads says that the main set-up and the connections with the motorways in England will be finished by 1970. Will they? Of course not, and the Secretary of State knows it. Therefore, when the Minister of State says that all this is so accurate and that it is churlish to mention jobs, he is talking through his hat, because this has proved a completely inaccurate document. This brings me to its production in the first place.

My hon. Friend the Member for Moray and Nairn cogently asked how it was that we suddenly got among the figures in the White Paper a figure for job losses of only about 70,000 over the five-year period. The White Paper also says that there is no reason to think that the loss of jobs that there has been up to now will continue. Why do we suddenly have this change of heart about January, 1966, when the Secretary of State could fly into print and produce this favourable picture of a reduction in job losses and of the job gains carrying on, admittedly not as high as under the Tory Government, but pretty high all the same?

It would not take a very perspicacious person to conclude that the Secretary of State had to produce this document simply because it was a couple of months before an election. About four months before, his right hon. Friend the Member for Belper (Mr. George Brown) had produced a National Plan for the country as a whole. Somebody asked him, about September, 1965, "Will there be a Scottish National Plan?", and the Secretary of State replied. "Yes, I will produce one." Thereupon, in the autumn of 1965, he set his Department to work. The result was that, in January, 1966, he had to find a Scottish plan which had favourable figures to enable him to get some good headlines and good copy for the election.

That is why this chicken has now come home to roost. My hon. Friend is quite right to raise this question. Despite all this controversy about this loss of jobs, which is the Secretary of State's most notable achievement in this field during his five years of office, and despite all the inquisitions, there seems to be remarkable confusion about the real reasons even among the Government themselves.

The Minister of State said this evening, and certainly the other night, that a large part of the decline in jobs was due to the decline in employment in coal mining. That sounds very plausible, but it is not so plausible if we look carefully at the figures. The decline in employment in coal mining is a little higher than had been forecast, but not very much higher. It was estimated at 16,500 and, in fact, has been a little over 20,000. That is a decline of about 5,000. We are not worried about a decline of 5,000; we are concerned about a decline of 10,000, 20,000, or 30,000.

The Minister of State asserted that this decline in mining was unexpected. The officers in his Department were asked about it when giving evidence to the Select Committee on Scottish Affairs. They said that the forecasts about mining had been made not by them, but by the Ministry of Fuel and Power, as it then was—and apparently even the Ministry of Fuel and Power did not know that this decline in coal mining would take place. The sudden acceleration in the fall of the number of jobs in mining has been given as the principal excuse why the forecasts were wrong, but the difference is only 5,000, which is not a major factor in a loss of over 35,000 jobs. Indeed, the loss in male jobs is even greater.

No part of the Government's case stands up to examination. It amounts to a lot of sound and fury, as usual produced admirably by the Minister of State, although, by misfortune to him, he did not produce it at the end of the debate; he produced it at the beginning of the debate and has had it pulled to pieces in the debate. I wish that he had been here a few moments ago when I was pulling it to pieces. The Government's case has been shown to be exaggerated or inaccurate.

I will conclude so as to let other hon. Members speak, although no one, I hope, suggests that I have spoken for too long. I am anxious not to leave the debate in an unconstructive frame of mind. One of the troubles when we have been pointing out these Government failures over the last few years to maintain the number of new jobs has been that every time the Secretary of State or the Minister of State has blown up in a great flurry of indignation at the very suggestion that anything was wrong. I suggest to them, and particularly to the Minister of State, that they will be better advised to listen carefully to some of the suggestions which are made. The Minister of State becomes very anxious when anyone mentions selective employment tax. Once, in Committee upstairs, he "blew his top", if I may use the phrase, and said that it was wrong to introduce into a debate on tourism the question of S.E.T. He was very indignant about it.

Both Ministers would be well advised to look for the reasons why their policy has failed. They cannot be pleased that a gain of jobs has been converted into a loss of jobs. Could not the reason possibly be that those who said all along that the introduction of discrimination against the service industries would be harmful to Scotland were right? The Secretary of State flew into print fairly early in the S.E.T. argument and said that it would be good for Scotland. In what respect has it been good for Scotland? If he looks at the figures in his own White Paper of the previous increase in jobs under a Tory Government, he will see that it took place in the service industries.

If that gain has been converted into a loss at the same time as he introduced discrimination against the service industries, surely there is a prima facie argument that that is responsible for the policy failure. If the Secretary of State looks more carefully at the figures he will see that one of the biggest drops in employment is one of 30,000 in the distributive trades.

One would need to be a great supporter of the Secretary of State and of the present Government to pretend that this loss of 30,000 in the distributive trades had nothing to do with discrimination in the service industries. The Secretary of State would be well advised to take a lesson from those who have said that S.E.T. is an inhibition to the Scottish economy. I believe that we have been right all along on this point. The fact that the Government have deliberately tried to throw a smokescreen up when anybody criticised S.E.T. has led them to this deplorable record in the provision of new jobs which they are defending this evening. If the Secretary of State does nothing else, I ask him to go to his colleagues and say, "It has been pointed out to me, and it is proved, that the discrimination against service industries loses jobs in Scotland and we therefore wish this discrimination ended".

May I make one other concrete suggestion which I hope the Secretary of State will take as a constructive suggestion. As it is clear that we are losing more jobs in Scotland than any of us would wish to do, is it not arguable that one of the principal factors is the increased cost of transport? I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will think it worth while listening to what I am saying. I take it that he is to reply to the debate. I am trying to be constructive. If there has been a great drop in employment in the distributive trades, and if we are losing jobs in Scotland faster than we wish, surely the question of the cost of transport must be relevant. A country like Scotland, at the end of long lines of communication, depends more than any other part of the United Kingdom on the cost of transport.

Will not the Secretary of State therefore agree that it would be helpful in encouraging industry to come to Scotland if we had some abatement of the terrific increases in petrol and licence duty, some abatement of the extra burden on transport caused by classing it as a service industry and putting selective employment tax on it, and some relief from the fact that the provision of new equipment in transport, such as lorries, is not eligible for investment allowances as it was in the past?

If the right hon. Gentleman will accept that this is bound to have a disincentive effect upon new industries coming into Scotland, he will realise why he is having to defend this loss of jobs. If the Secretary of State can only grasp those suggestions he will have a reply when people say, as they will, "You have lost so many jobs for Scotland. What are you going to do about it?" If he can tell us what he is going to do about it, we shall be very happy.

The Government are accused of having produced an inaccurate document for electoral purposes in 1966. The inaccuracy is beyond dispute. The Government's responsibility is beyond dispute. They ought to be men enough to admit it and do something to put it right.

Mr. Speaker

I appealed earlier for short speeches. I am sorry that not every hon. Member has responded to that appeal.

9.18 p.m.

Mr. Peter Doig (Dundee, West)

The cause of Scotland's present unemployment problems is well known and has existed for a long time, namely, the fact that we have been far too dependent on ou.r traditional heavy industries, and these are nearly all now declining industries. Both Front Benches have agreed on this. Agriculture, coalmining, railways, shipbuilding and, even in my own constituency, jute are all declining industries.

I shudder to think what would have happened to the people of Scotland, with the sort of unemployment figures that we might have had, if we had had a separate Scottish Parliament. In spite of all the propaganda that we get from the Nationalists about our London-based Government dominating the economy, as We heard in an interjection from one hon. Member not long ago, unemployment has been allowed to increase in England and around London in order to keep down the unemployment rate in Scotland, and a considerable amount of so-called London-based Government money has been used to help us to do it. Nobody disputes that Scotland has had more than her fair share of this money.

We must consider how the two alternative Governments have tackled this problem. To get a clear picture we must return to the Distribution of Industry Act, passed during the time of the first Labour Government. That began the policy of distributing industry fairly. Stemming from that, cities such as Dundee, which were formerly almost exclusively dependent on one industry, became highly diversified. In addition, although workers in the Dundee jute mills were badly paid and suffered bad conditions of employment, because of the introduction of new industries through the operation of industrial development certificates, new industries which were well paid and which gave their workers good modern conditions, even the workers in the jute mills became much better off.

If a group of new industries pays high wages and offers good conditions, the older industries have to improve their conditions, because their employers have to compete for labour and have to improve wages and conditions for their workers. The whole city benefits, not just that section fortunate enough to get jobs in the new industries. It is important not only that we should have jobs, but that they should be good, well-paid jobs in good conditions.

Let us consider what the previous Government did. In my own city we now have a slight recession in the jute trade with unemployment at a little over 3,000 a figure which is considered to be disastrous. But under the previous Government the figure was 5,000 in 1962 and 9,000 in 1952. During the 'thirties it averaged 30,000 for many years. Yet today a figure of just over 3,000 is considered disastrous.

The last Government did not make any serious attempt to distribute industry, so much so that industrial development certificates became a farce and twice as many were granted in London as in the whole of Scotland. The present Government have tightened the procedure tremendously in the London area and succeeded in getting far more industry to Scotland.

I was a member of the Scottish Select Committee with the hon. Member for Ayr (Mr. Younger), who must have heard this because it is on the record, when we interviewed representatives of the Board of Trade. I asked why it was that the industrial development certificate policy had been so successful under the present Government and so unsuccessful under the previous Government. They gave the explanation quite openly—because the present Government believed in distributing industry, and the inference was that the previous Government did not.

The other thing that sickens me about the Opposition is that they constantly talk about cutting public expenditure. The hon. Member for North Angus and Mearns (Mr. Buchanan-Smith) is a typical example. He made a famous speech in Stonehaven in which he said to the people that Every £1 of public expenditure is £1 less in your pockets. In the same speech he went on to say that he welcomed increased subsidies to farmers, increased grants for the fishermen and higher subsidies for fishing vessels. I checked over the following two months and every vote that he cast in this House was for increased public expenditure. When we get down to details, hon. Members opposite are in favour of public expenditure, but when it comes to a general argument they say that they are opposed to it.

This is the sort of humbug that we get from them. Not long ago we had the right hon. Member for Bexley (Mr. Heath) visiting my constituency. He did not exactly mention the aluminium smelter, but everyone knew what he was referring to. He said that the number of jobs this amount of money would produce did not justify the expenditure. Did hon. Members opposite vote against the smelter? Not they. They say when talking in general terms that they are against it, but when it comes down to it they vote for items which will result in increased Government expenditure.

Mr. Gordon Campbell rose

Mr. Speaker

Order. Interventions prolong speeches and the winding up speeches have yet to come.

Mr. Doig

I will end there and hope that what I have said keeps the debate going.

9.28 p.m.

Mr. Alick Buchanan-Smith (North Angus and Mearns)

I do not intend to take long tonight, because I want to give the Secretary of State time to answer some of the points which have been made in the debate. He has plenty for which to answer. I am sorry that the hon. Member for Dundee, West (Mr. Doig) has tried to bait me on certain matters, but I will try to avoid the temptation of dealing specifically with what he has said so that I may deal with what is of real importance in the debate. I do, however, thank the hon. Member for the honour he does me in reading all my speeches. I know that he hangs on my words, because he told me over a year ago that he was taking a great interest in them.

If we have a Government that can manage the economy properly then we can have resources to devote to the things which I say are necessary. It is when we have the economy of the country badly managed that we have to scrutinise every penny of Government expenditure and make certain that our measures are effective in getting Scottish development policy right.

Contrary to what the Minister of State said earlier, there is nothing in what we have said to decry what is going on in Scotland. We want to see Scotland progress and the speeches of my hon. Friends tonight bear this out. We want to see greater progress and that is what the debate is about. It is the job of the Opposition to show the Government up when they have fallen down on the job. The Minister of State referred with great pride to visitors coming from abroad to see how regional policies work in Scotland. He stood there taking credit as though the development policies have come from his Government and his party.

I would remind him that development policy for Scotland started under a Conservative Government and that it was a Conservative Government that first brought the proper ideas of developing policies into force. I would remind him that it was a Conservative Government that brought the strip mill to Scotland.

It was a Conservative Government that brought the motor car industry to Scotland, contrary to the impression given by the hon. Gentleman in a television broadcast. In addition, the new roads, the bridges and all the infrastructure of development, for which, incidentally, the Secretary of State takes so much credit when he is to be seen cutting tapes, opening this, that and the next project, all of which have helped Scotland, were planned and made possible under a Conservative Government.

Therefore, before the Minister of State tries to take credit for these things as though his party and his Government had a monopoly of success in development matters, let him cast his mind a little further back than 1964, because development in Scotland started long before then.

I support strongly what my hon. Friend the Member for Renfrew, East (Miss Harvie Anderson) said when I say that we, too, believe in the quality of jobs we get. This was borne out in what was said by my hon. Friend the Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. Gordon Campbell). At the same time, I say to the hon. Member for Glasgow, Mary-hill (Mr. Hannan) that we believe in the modernisation of industry. We do not necessarily believe that industries which, in terms of Scotland's long-term economic progress, are likely to contract for economic reasons should be bolstered up. We want to see our modern industries moving forward to ensure a balanced economy in Scotland. At the same time, we believe in training. This is one of the more effective ways in which we can spend our money in developing industry in Scotland. [Interruption.] The hon. Member for Central Ayrshire (Mr. Manuel) must be patient.

When the hon. Member for Maryhill refers to the training centres, he should remember that including the centres then being planned there were seven for Scotland when the Labour Government came into power in 1964. Again, therefore, the hon. Member should not take credit for what a Conservative Government had already carried out and planned.

Mr. Hannan rose

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

I cannot give way. The hon. Member has had his chance to speak and time is short.

This debate has shown that taking a comparison between 1960–64 and 1964–68, which are the two periods the Government have chosen in their White Paper, not only were we in the Conservative Government prepared and able to create a great number of new jobs, but that, at the same time, we were able to cope with declining industries and the loss of jobs in those industries.

The Minister of State spoke about the white spot disappearing off the television screen. It is much more likely to be the white spot of his White Paper getting further and further away as its targets become ever more difficult to reach. The white spots which the hon. Gentleman sees disappearing are from his own White Paper.

When we compare the years 1960–64 and 1964–68 and we realise our success in those years, with a net gain of 30,000 new jobs as against a net loss during the last four years of 67,000, this puts properly into perspective the failure of the Government's policies which we condemn this evening.

The difference between the two parties is our success in managing the economy. The Minister of State turned to the unemployment figures, and I would like to deal quickly with them. He said that England had 'flu whereas Scotland had pneumonia. Let the hon. Gentleman look at the unemployment figures. The only reason why the ratio appears to be better is that the average level of unemployment of the United Kingdom as a whole has been higher. He should not be content, simply because both countries now perhaps have pneumonia, to regard this necessarily as progress.

Again, let the lion. Gentleman consider industrial activity. During the years from 1960 to 1964, there was a 15-point improvement in industrial activity in Scotland as against an increase of only 9 points between 1964 and 1968. As my hon. Friend the Member for Moray and Nairn said, this failure in the growth rate of our Scottish economy is one of the main causes at the root of the Government's failure to cope with the decline in the number of jobs in industry in Scotland.

I should like to ask the Secretary of State—the Minister of State ducked this question—what he believes to be the effect of the selective employment tax on Scotland. As we know, from Parliamentary Answers, it has drained £8 million a year from Scotland net, even after taking into account R.E.P. and so on—

Mr. William Hamilton (Fife, West)


Mr. Buchanan-Smith

The hon. Member says, "Nonsense." He should look at the—[Interruption.] Yes, we will abolish S.E.T. Let the hon. Member look at Questions answered by his own Ministers. Let him look at the loss of 30,000 jobs in distribution. Let the Secretary of State consider paragraph 137 of his own White Paper, in which he says: …there will go a growth in employment in the service sector…this will be a sign of progress. Does he count the loss of 30,000 jobs as a sign of progress?

The Government turn their Amendment on four things—floor space which they have created, jobs which they have expected to provide, emigration, and the relative level of weekly earnings. What is the use of creating more floor space in factories unless one has jobs and people to fill them? It is jobs and people at work that we are talking about. What is the use of empty advance factories to Scotland's unemployment problem? There is not much life and soul in an empty factory.

As to the jobs that they expected to provide, this is more Socialist pie-in-the sky. They said that there would be an increase of 60,000 by 1970. So far, there has been a loss of 67,000. On the Government's own record, we can show that we have to treat their expectations very lightly indeed. As we know, their expectations are entirely different from their performance. As usual with a Socialist Government, it is jam tomorrow and not today. Prosperity is always around the corner.

The third matter on which they rest the Amendment is emigration. Let the Government face the record. In five years of Labour government there has been a loss of 193,000 people from Scotland—26,000 more than in the comparable period under a Conservative Government.

Finally, on weekly earnings, we welcome the fact that the gap has narrowed between Scotland and the other parts of the United Kingdom, but it is small consolation to people in Scotland that this gap has narrowed if the jobs are not there in which they can earn these wages.

What this debate has shown conclusively is that the number of jobs in Scotland is declining and we ask the Secretary of State whether he is content with that. It is people at work that we are concerned about. This is what the debate is about. The Government have not only failed to meet their own target and expectations; they have also failed Scotland, and it is for this that I ask my hon. Friends to reject their Amendment.

9.38 p.m.

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. William Ross)

I had hoped to hear something in this debate that would have given me cause to get on with new and constructive suggestions thrown up from the party opposite, who were determined to do something for Scotland because it was in such a terrible and deplorable state. For one moment, I thought that the hon. Member for Ayr (Mr. Younger)—he is getting weaker every day—was going to offer to reduce the price of beer by 2d. a pint. What we have had is a short debate, of three hours. If Scotland's economy had been in as parlous state as these people suggest, we should have been having a debate on two days, as we used to have year after year—

Mr. Ian MacArthur (Perth and East Perthshire)

Now answer the question.

Mr. Ross

I will answer the questions in my own way and will make my own speech, and the hon. Member can go and open bazaars as much as he likes.

At least the party opposite have the courage to give us the chance to answer some of their points, but I am surprised at the narrow and sterile point which they have raised. In January, 1966, we produced the White Paper. It was an estimate of what we would lose. Let me tell the hon. Member for Ayr and anyone else who is interested that we did not suddenly think in the month of September that we would need to produce that White Paper. Had the hon. Gentleman been here he would have known that it had been promised long before, and that hon. Gentlemen opposite were asking week after week when it was coming. It was not produced purely and simply by politicians but by the Scottish Economic Planning Board. He asked about the Minister of Power producing figures and estimates in relation to mining. Who else should? The Minister of Power was responsible for the pits, the Minister of Power was in touch with the National Coal Board, from which he got the estimates. If the hon. Gentleman does not know this, it is time he did, that the Ministry of Power was itself represented on the Economic Planning Board. The matter went from there to the Economic Planning Council. It is quite wrong for the hon. Gentleman to suggest that this was just casually thought up and thrown in in the month of January.

I am surprised indeed that hon. Gentlemen on the other side of the House have concentrated on these sterile arguments and figures after all the explanations they have been given, and that they have failed to do real justice to the continuing problems of Scotland and the success of our policies, and that they have not demonstrated to us how those policies could have been improved.

We have made a reality of regional development and regional planning. My hon. Friend the Minister of State was quite right when he spoke of this. We have not concentrated just on Central Scotland. We have dealt with planning of the Highlands—

Mr. Manuel

A thing the Tories never did.

Mr. Ross

—and have instituted an executive instrument which, for the first time, gives some hope to the Highlands where the Chairman of the Highlands and Islands Development Board says that it is not death they are talking about now in the Highlands: it is life. I wish the hon. Gentleman the Member for Ayr would have the courtesy just to sit quiet. I did not interrupt him.

The problems of the Central Belt are crucial as are the problems of the Highlands, the North-East and the Borders. Hon. Gentlemen opposite know who is stultifying development in the Borders. It is the friends of hon. Gentlemen who have moved the Motion tonight. The Development Plan offers possibilities of development there, but we have not even been able to get the land on which to build the houses.

The scars of the north-east, the southwest, even Tayside, may be smaller than those of Central Scotland, but I can assure lion. Gentlemen opposite and all the House that their wounds are much deeper. Because we realise this and care about it we have made nearly the whole of Scotland a development area, and we have created the instrument of the Highlands and Islands Development Board with real powers. We have got together in Scotland for planning purposes men from the universities, men from the local authorities, men from both sides of industry, and these are the people who are today studying the problems, and these are the people who today are inviting me to give them more and more information on which we can base accurately our targets. We have embarked recently upon a comprehensive study of the opportunities for growth presented by the changing structure in the west of Scotland. I wonder whether hon. Gentlemen opposite realise that the only thing done by their party when it was in office was to produce the Central Scotland Plan. There was nothing in it about industry or about the hon. Gentleman's constituency. It did not even include Dundee. On 3rd December, 1963, the final words of the then Secretary of State for Scotland, after 13 years, were these: …this is the first attempt really to get things in Scotland put right."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 3rd December, 1963; Vol. 685, c. 1105.] The hon. Member for North Angus and Mearns (Mr. Buchanan-Smith) said that what people wanted were jobs. Does he realise that from the end of 1962 through 1963 the monthly average of unemployment in Scotland was oven 100,000 What is the good of a job if a man is not in it, if he is not working? In February 1963, there were 136,000 unemployed. Compare these to the figures which we have had today.

I realised that when we set a target for a considerable reduction in the migration from Scotland we were going out on a limb. We proclaimed that this was one of the important factors which showed how Scotland was doing. It was suggested in the Central Scotland Plan that if migration continued at the same rate it would probably frustrate the economic growth of Scotland. The published figure at that time available to the House showed that migration was running at the rate of 29,000 in 1961–62. The following year it had risen to over 30,000, and for June 1963–64 the figure was running at the rate of over 40,000 a year. That was the trend which we inherited, and if the hon. Gentleman wants to know exactly how this trend is affected by events in Scotland, let him read Lord Clydesmuir, who wrote on 24th February, 1967, that as unemployment in Scotland either rises or falls, it is followed some 18 months later by a corresponding rise or fall in emigration from Scotland and that a large part of the explanation of the high net loss of population from Scotland in 1965 and 1966 was to be found in the general state of the Scottish economy from 1963 to 1964 when unemployment was high.

I do not ask that the Government be congratulated for all that they have done; the achievements of Scotland are the achievements of the people of Scotland. Local authorities, industry, trade unions and everyone else must co-operate to see this through. The latest figure, from June 1968 to June 1969, shows that migration has been reduced to 25,000, the lowest for a decade, and the third successive reduction, and this is a matter for congratulation to all who played their part.

The hon. Member for Moray and Nairn (Mr. Gordon Campbell), when he plays this numbers game, does no credit to himself. We have had tremendous success in getting new industry into Scotland. That is why we are ahead of target in the provision of new jobs, which is what really matters. Hon. Gentlemen seem to think that we should not have accepted the indications given by industry in 1965 and in the White Paper of what the continued loss would be.

People were saying that the drain from agriculture and the switch to mechanisation had gone as far as it was likely to go. When the coal mining industry made certain suggestions, were we to disbelieve them? Have hon. Gentlemen opposite forgotten the development of nuclear power and the discovery of North Sea gas which have made a considerable difference to the targets of employment in the fuel industry?

What has happened is that we have had an accelerated rundown in those industries which were the weakest in Scotland and at the same time have had a greater run in of efficient, new, sophisticated and desirable industries.

It shocks me to listen to hon. Gentlemen. I have with me a special survey published by the Financial Times on 3rd November this year. Here are a few examples from that survey: Scotland—good reason to be pleased…implications for the future of a decade of change…foreign investment diversifies industry… There is a story there that according to the Scottish Council's figures there were 89 United States-controlled companies in Scotland on 1st January, 1969, representing an investment of £231.6 million. Five years ago American investment stood at less than half that figure.

What was the hon. Gentleman who opened the debate saying four years ago? On 26th July, 1965, he said that corporation tax …has had the effect of frightening foreign businesses, particularly American business which have been so successful in Scotland in the past, from settling in Scotland."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 26th July, 1965; Vol. 717, c. 148.] They have more than doubled their investment. No wonder we are quite sickened by the attitude of the party opposite.

But I am not yet finished. Surely hon. Gentlemen opposite read these newspapers: Break through in the Highlands…much improved communications… The hon. Gentleman spoke to us about the road to the south. Does he realise that his Government said that it was to be finished in 1955? After all, it was started in the year 1938. I can tell the hon. Gentleman that we are up to target. He should go to see what we have been able to do on the Glasgow-Edinburgh run that was such a disgrace under the administration of the party opposite. It was not until 1960 that expenditure in Scotland on trunk and major road improvements and developments exceeded £10 million. Today it is over £30 million. One can see in Scotland the great roads linking the cities.

The hon. Gentleman said that I was cutting the tapes on projects planned by him. They may have been planned, but did they pay for them? In the last months of the administration of the party opposite decisions in principle fell from Whitehall and St. Andrew's House like autumn leaves, but decisions in principle do not cost anything. They said that they had arranged for the Post Office to go to Glasgow. They took the decision, but they did not arrange it. They had taken a ballot in the Post Office and the Post Office said they did not want to go. The first thing that our Postmaster-General did was to hold a great meeting in the Albert Hall of the Post Office workers to persuade them.

It was this Government and Peter Meldrurn, the Lord Provost of Glasgow, who had to speak to them. Hon. Gentlemen opposite did the easy part. It is rather like a somebody saying "I will climb Everest", but leaving the actual climbing to somebody else. There is no great credit due to the party opposite in that particular matter.

Mr. Cordon Campbell rose

Mr. Ross

No, I am sorry. I want to deal with one or two more points put by the party opposite. The hon. Lady the Member for Renfrew, East (Miss Harvie Anderson) wanted to know if we were to undertake job planning and forecasting. This is being done by studies in depth in the hon. Lady's part of the world in the West of Scotland. The recent decision to embark on three new large industrial sites in that area is based on this analysis. The other instances are the surveys which have taken place in other parts of Scotland.

The hon. Lady spoke about the possible difficulty of placing people in employment after they have been trained. What a miserable story that is of the previous Government's performance in relation to training. Since January, 1964, 7,200 trainees have come out of Government training centres, and of these 92 per cent. have been placed in jobs using their skill. It is easy to make the kind of slur on the trade unions that they will not work with people who have been trained, but the facts are entirely opposite.

I sympathise with the hon. Member for Aberdeenshire, West (Mr. James Davidson) about the troubles of Inverurie, but he will appreciate that when this problem first arose he came to see me and I gave him all the information available to me. I do not know who it was, but someone leaked, and, in a situation such as this,

the first people entitled to know the facts are the trade unions who have to negotiate certain procedures with the employers. All the rumours and the backing of this or that horse as the best runner did not help at all in that situation.

The hon. Member should know that in October Aberdeenshire County Council decided to purchase the workshop and to develop the site as an industrial estate. He was reasonably satisfied at the time that this was the right thing to do. We mounted a special exercise in publicity over Inverurie. The county council will be helped to meet the £60,000 purchase price by up to £15,000 from the Development Fund. We have an advance factory being built. Cruickshanks and Partners, electrical engineers of Kirkintilloch, agreed to purchase a large part of the workshops for the manufacture of switch-gear. Although the amount of employment is not as satisfactory as we would like it to be, this is a start.

The hon. Member for Ayr suggested that what we have listed in our Amendment is quite wrong and that there has been inaccuracy in the White Paper about achievements in infrastructure. We would never have required to do anything about infrastructure if what the previous Secretary of State said had been the fact. He announced from his Argyllshire house on 29th October, 1962, to the Daily Express that Everything is ready for a massive step forward. The country is now equipped to surge ahead industrially. What the planners call infra-structure is ready. If that were so I wonder why we have been spending so much on houses, roads, technical colleges and schools. There has been a great advance in all these things, and we shall carry on with it.

We are getting the results, and I am sure that my hon. and right hon. Friends and anyone who thinks rightly about what is going on in Scotland will treat this Motion with the contempt it deserves and will support our Amendment.

Question put, That the Amendment be made:—

The House divided: Ayes 278, Noes 228.

Division No. 33.] AYES [10.0 p.m.
Abse, Leo Allen, Scholefield Atkinson, Norman (Tottenham)
Albu, Austen Armstrong, Ernest Bacon, Rt. Hn. Alice
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Ashley, Jack Bagier, Gordon A. T.
Alldritt, Walter Atkins, Ronald (Preston, N.) Barnes, Michael
Barnett, Joel Griffiths, Eddie (Brightside) Molloy, William
Baxter, William Gunter, Rt. Hn. R. J. Morgan, Elystan (Cardiganshire)
Beaney, Alan Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)
Bence, Cyril Hamilton, William (Fife, W.) Morris, Charles R. (Openshaw)
Benn, Rt. Hn. Anthony Wedgwood Hamling, William Morris, John (Aberavon)
Bennett, James (G'gow, Bridgeton) Hannan, William Mulley, Rt. Hn. Frederick
Bidwell, Sydney Harper, Joseph Murray, Albert
Binns, John Hart, Rt. Hn. Judith Neal, Harold
Bishop, E. S. Haseldine, Norman Newens, Stan
Blenkinsop, Arthur Hazell, Bert Noel-Baker, Rt. Hn. Philip
Boardman, H. (Leigh) Healey, Rt. Hn. Denis Norwood, Christopher
Booth, Albert Heffer, Eric S. Oakes, Gordon
Boston, Terence Henig, Stanley Ogden, Eric
Boyden, James Hilton, W. S. O'Halloran, Michael
Bradley, Tom Hobden, Dennis O'Malley, Brian
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Hooley, Frank Oram, Albert E.
Broughton, Sir Alfred Horner, John Orbach, Maurice
Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan) Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Orme, Stanley
Brown, Bob (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, W.) Howarth, Harry (Wellingborough) Oswald, Thomas
Brown, R. W. (Shoreditch & F'bury) Howie, W. Owen, Will (Morpeth)
Buchan, Norman Hoy, Rt. Hn. James Padley, Walter
Buchanan, Richard (G'gow, Sp'burn) Hughes, Rt. Hn. Cledwyn (Anglesey) Page, Derek (King's Lynn)
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Paget, R. T.
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Hughes, Roy (Newport) Palmer, Arthur
Cant, R. B. Hunter, Adam Pannell, Rt. Hn. Charles
Carmichael, Neil Hynd, John Park, Trevor
Carter-Jones, Lewis Jackson, Colin (B'h'se & Spenb'gh) Parker, John (Dagenham)
Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara Jackson, Peter M. (High Peak) Parkyn, Brian (Bedford)
Conlan, Bernard Jay, Rt. Hn. Douglas Pavitt, Laurence
Corbet, Mrs. Freda Jenkins, Hugh (Putney) Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd)
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.) Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred
Crawshaw, Richard Johnson, James (K'ston-on-Hull, W.) Pentland, Norman
Cronin, John Jones, Dan (Burnley) Perry, Ernest G. (Battersea, S.)
Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.) Perry, George H. (Nottingham, S.)
Dalyell, Tam Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Prentice, Rt. Hn. Reg
Darling, Rt. Hn. George Jones, T. Alec (Rhondda, West) Price, Christopher (Perry Barr)
Davidson, Arthur (Accrington) Kelley, Richard Price, William (Rugby)
Davies, Ednyfed Hudson (Conway) Kerr, Dr. David (W'worth, Central) Probert, Arthur
Davies, Dr. Ernest (Stretford) Latham, Arthur Randall, Harry
Davies, Rt. Hn. Harold (Leek) Lawson, George Rankin, John
Davies, Ifor (Gower) Lee, Rt. Hn. Jennie (Cannock) Rees, Merlyn
Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Lee, John (Reading) Richard, Ivor
Delargy, H. J. Lestor, Miss Joan Roberts, Albert (Normanton)
Dell, Edmund Lever, Rt. Hn. Harold (Cheetham) Roberts, Rt. Hn. Goronwy
Dempsey, James Lewis, Ron (Carlisle) Roberts, Gwilym (Bedfordshire, S.)
Dewar, Donald Lomas, Kenneth Robertson, John (Paisley)
Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Loughlin, Charles Robinson, Rt. Hn. Kenneth (St.P'c'as)
Dickens, James Luard, Evan Rodgers, William (Stockton)
Dobson, Ray Lyon, Alexander W. (York) Roebuck, Roy
Doig, Peter Lyons, Edward (Bradford, E.) Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)
Driberg, Tom Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Rose, Paul
Dunn, James A. McBride, Neil Ross, Rt. Hn. William
Dunnett, Jack McCann, John Rowlands, E.
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth (Exeter) MacColl, James Shaw, Arnold (Ilford, S.)
Dunwoody, Dr. John (F'th & C'b'e) MacDermot, Niall Sheldon, Robert
Eadie, Alex Macdonald, A. H. Shore, Rt. Hn. Peter (Stepney)
Ellis, John McElhone, Frank Short, Mrs. Renée (W'hampton, N.E.)
English, Michael McGuire, Michael Silkin, Rt. Hn. John (Deptord)
Ennals, David McKay, Mrs. Margaret Silverman, Julius
Ensor, David Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen) Skeffington, Arthur
Evans, Fred (Caerphilly) Mackie, John Slater, Joseph
Faulds, Andrew Mackintosh, John P. Small, William
Fernyhough, E. MacMillan, Malcolm (Western Isles) Snow, Julian
Finch, Harold McMillan, Tom (Glasgow, C.) Spriggs, Leslie
Fitch, Alan (Wigan) McNamara, J. Kevin Steele, Thomas (Dunbartonshire, W.)
Fletcher, Rt. Hn. Sir Eric (Islington, E.) MacPherson, Malcolm Stonehouse, Rt. Hn. John
Fletcher, Ted (Darlington) Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.) Strauss, Rt. Hn. G. R.
Foot, Rt. Hn. Sir Dingle (Ipswich) Mahon, Simon (Bootle) Swain, Thomas
Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale) Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Taverne, Dick
Ford, Ben Mallalieu, J.P.W. (Huddersfield, E.) Thomas, Rt. Hn. George
Forrester, John Manuel, Archie Thomson, Rt. Hn. George
Fowler, Gerry Mapp, Charles Thornton, Ernest
Fraser, John (Norwood) Marks, Kenneth Tinn, James
Freeson, Reginald Marquand, David Tomney, Frank
Galpern, Sir Myer Marsh, Rt. Hn. Richard Tuck, Raphael
Gardner, Tony Mason, Rt. Hn. Roy Urwin, T. W.
Garrett, W. E. Maxwell, Robert Varley, Eric G.
Ginsburg, David Mayhew, Christopher Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)
Golding, John Mellish, Rt. Hn. Robert Walker, Harold (Doncaster)
Gordon Walker, Rt. Hn. P. C. Mendelson, John Wallace, George
Gray, Dr. Hugh (Yarmouth) Millan, Bruce Watkins, David (Consett)
Greenwood, Rt. Hn. Anthony Miller, Dr. M. S. Watkins, Tudor (Brecon & Radnor)
Gregory, Arnold Milne, Edward (Blyth) Weitzman, David
Grey, Charles (Durham) Mitchell, R. c. (S'th'pton, Test) Wellbeloved, James
Wells, William (Walsall, N.) Williams, Alan (Swansea, W.) Woof, Robert
Whitaker, Ben Williams, Clifford (Abertillery) Wyatt, Woodrow
White, Mrs. Eirene Williams, Mrs. Shirley (Hitchin)
Whitlock, William Willis, Rt. Hn. George TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Wilkins, W. A. Winnick, David Mr. J. D. Concannon and
Willey, Rt. Hn. Frederick Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A. Mr. Ioan L. Evans.
Allson, Michael (Barkston Ash) Gilmour, Sir John (Fife, E.) Monro, Hector
Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead) Glyn, Sir Richard Montgomery, Fergus
Amery, Rt. Hn. Julian Godber, Rt. Hn. J. B. Morgan-Giles, Rear-Adm.
Archer, Jeffrey (Louth) Goodhart, Philip Morrison, Charles (Devizes)
Astor, John Goodhew, Victor Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles
Atkins, Humphrey (M't'n & M'd'n) Gower, Raymond Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh
Baker, Kenneth (Acton) Grant, Anthony Murton, Oscar
Baker, W. H. K. (Banff) Grant-Ferris, Sir Robert Nabarro, Sir Gerald
Barber, Ft. Hn. Anthony Gresham Cooke, R. Neave, Airey
Batsford, Brian Grieve, Percy Nicholls, Sir Harmar
Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton Grimond, Rt. Hn. J. Noble, Rt. Hn. Michael
Bell, Ronald Gurden, Harold Nott, John
Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay) Hall, John (Wycombe) Onslow, Cranley
Bennett, Or. Reginald (Gos. & Fhm) Hall-Davis, A. G. F. Orr, Capt. L. P. S.
Berry, Hn. Anthony Hamilton, Lord (Fermanagh) Orr-Ewing, Sir Ian
Biffen, John Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury) Osborn, John (Hallam)
Biggs-Davison, John Harris, Reader (Heston) Page, Graham (Crosby)
Birch, Rt. Hn. Nigel Harrison, Brian (Maldon) Page, John (Harrow, W.)
Black, Sir Cyril Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye) Pardoe, John
Blaker, Peter Harvie Anderson, Miss Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe)
Boardman, Tom (Leicester, S.W.) Hawkins, Paul Percival, Ian
Body, Richard Hay, John Pike, Miss Mervyn
Bossom, Sir Clive Heald, Rt. Hn. Sir Lionel Pink, R. Bonner
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. John Heseltine, Michael Pounder, Rafton
Boyle, Rt. Hn. Sir Edward Higgins, Terence L. Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch
Brewis, John Hiley, Joseph Price, David (Eastleigh)
Brinton, Sir Tatton Hill, J. E. B. Prior, J. M. L.
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Hirst, Geoffrey Pym, Francis
Brown, Sir Edward (Bath) Hogg, Rt. Hn. Quintin Quennell, Miss J. M.
Bruce-Gardyne, J. Holland, Philip Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James
Bryan, Paul Hordern, Peter Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter
BUchanan-Smith, Alick (Angus, N & M) Hornby, Richard Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David
Buck, Antony (Colchester) Howell, David (Guildford) Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon
Bullus, Sir Eric Hunt, John Ridley, Hn. Nicholas
Burden, F. A. Hutchison, Michael Clark Ridsdale, Julian
Campbell, B. (Oldham, W.) Iremonger, T. L. Robson Brown, Sir William
Campbell, Cordon (Moray & Nairn) Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye) Rossi, Hugh (Hornsey)
Carlisle, Mark Jenkin, Patrick (Woodford) Royle, Anthony
Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert Jennings, J. C. (Burton) Russell, Sir Ronald
Channon, H. P. G. Johnson Smith, G. (E. Grinstead) Scott, Nicholas
Chataway, Christopher Jones, Arthur (Northants, S.) Scott-Hopkins, James
Chichester-Clark, R. Jopling, Michael Shaw, Michael (Sc'b'gh & Whitby)
Clegg, Walter Joseph, Rt. Hn. Sir Keith Silvester, Frederick
Cooke, Robert Kaberry, Sir Donald Sinclair, Sir George
Cordle, John Kerby, Capt. Henry Smith, Dudley (W'wick & L'mington)
Corfield, F. V. Kershaw, Anthony Smith, John (London & W'minster)
Costain, A. p. Kimball, Marcus Speed, Keith
Craddock, Sir Beresford (Spelthorne) Kitson, Timothy Stainton, Keith
Crouch, David Lambton, Viscount Stodart, Anthony
Crowder, F. P. Lane, David Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir M.
Cunningham, Sir Knox Langford-Holt, Sir John Summers, Sir Spencer
Dalkeith, Earl of Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry Tapsell, Peter
Dance, James Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland) Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Dean, Paul Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey (Sut'nC'dfield) Taylor, Edward M. (G'gow, Cathcart)
Dodds-Parker, Douglas Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Selwyn (Wirral) Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)
Douglas-Home, Rt. Hn. Sir Alec Longden, Gilbert Temple, John M.
Drayson, G. B. McAdden, Sir Stephen Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret
du Cann, Rt. Hn. Edward MacArthur, Ian Tilney, John
Eden, Sir John Maclean, Sir Fitzroy Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H.
Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Macleod, Rt. Hn. Iain van Straubenzee, W. R.
Emery, Peter McMaster, Stanley Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John
Errington, Sir Eric Macmillan, Maurice (Farnham) Waddington, David
Ewing, Mrs. Winifred McNair-Wilson, Michael Walker, Peter (Worcester)
Eyre, Reginald McNair-Wilson, Patrick (NewForest) Walker-Smith, Rt. Hn. Sir Derek
Farr, John Maddan, Martin Wall, Patrick
Fisher, Nigel Marples, Rt. Hn. Ernest Walters, Dennis
Fletcher-Cooke, Charles Marten, Neil Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)
Fortescue, Tim Maudling, Rt. Hn. Reginald Weatherill, Bernard
Foster, Sir John Mawby, Ray Wells, John (Maidstone)
Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh (St'fford & Stone) Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J. Whitelaw, Rt. Hn. William
Fry, Peter Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C. Wiggin, A. W.
Galbraith, Hn. T. G. Mills, Peter (Torrington) Williams, Donald (Dudley)
Gibson-Watt, David Mills, Stratton (Belfast, N.) Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk, C.) Miscampbell, Norman Winstanley, Dr. M. P.
Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick Worsley, Marcus TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Wood, Rt. Hn. Richard Wylie, N. R. Mr. R. W. Elliott and
Woodnutt, Mark Younger, Hn. George Mr. Jasper More.

Main Question, as amended, put:

The House divided: Ayes 276, Noes 237.

Division No. 34.] AYES [10.13 p.m.
Abse, Leo Fernyhough, E. Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson
Albu, Austen Finch, Harold McBride, Neil
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Fitch, Alan (Wigan) McCann, John
Alldritt, Walter Fletcher, Rt. Hn. Sir Eric (Islington, E.) MacColl, James
Allen, Scholefield Fletcher, Ted (Darlington) MacDermot, Niall
Armstrong, Ernest Foot, Rt. Hn. Sir Dingle (Ipswich) Macdonald, A. H.
Ashley, Jack Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale) McElhone, Frank
Atkins, Ronald (Preston, N.) Ford, Ben McGuire, Michael
Atkinson, Norman (Tottenham) Forrester, John McKay, Mrs. Margaret
Bacon, Rt. Hn. Alice Fowler, Gerry Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen)
Bagier, Gordon A. T. Fraser, John (Norwood) Mackie, John
Barnes, Michael Freeson, Reginald Mackintosh, John P.
Barnett, Joel Galpern, Sir Myer MacMillan, Malcolm (Western Isles)
Baxter, William Gardner, Tony McMillan, Tom (Glasgow, C.)
Beaney, Alan Garrett, W. E. McNamara, J. Kevin
Bence, Cyril Ginsburg, David
Benn, Rt. Hn. Anthony Wedgwood Golding, John MacPherson, Malcolm
Bennett, James (G'gow, Bridgeton) Gordon Walker, Rt. Hn. P. C. Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.)
Bidwell, Sydney Gray, Dr. Hugh (Yarmouth) Mahon, Simon (Bootle)
Binns, John Greenwood, Rt. Hn. Anthony Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)
Bishop, E. S. Gregory, Arnold Mallalieu, J.P.W. (Huddersfield, E.)
Blenkinsop, Arthur Grey, Charles (Durham) Manuel, Archie
Boardman, H. (Leigh) Griffiths, Eddie (Brightside) Mapp, Charles
Boston, Terence Gunter, Rt. Hn. R. J. Marks, Kenneth
Boyden, James Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Marquand, David
Bradley, Tom Hamilton, William (Fife, W.) Marsh, Rt. Hn. Richard
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Hamling, William Mason, Rt. Hn. Roy
Broughton, Sir Alfred Hannan, William Maxwell, Robert
Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan) Harper, Joseph Mayhew, Christopher
Brown, Bob (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, W.) Hart, Rt. Hn. Judith Mellish, Rt. Hn. Robert
Brown, R. W. (Shoreditch & F'bury) Haseldine, Norman Mendelson, John
Buchan, Norman Hazell, Bert Millan, Bruce
Buchanan, Richard (G'gow, Sp'burn) Healey, Rt. Hn. Denis Miller, Dr. M. S.
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Heffer, Eric S. Mitchell, R. C. (S'th'pton, Test)
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Henig, Stanley Molloy, William
Cant, R. B. Hilton, W. S. Morgan, Elystan (Cardiganshire)
Carmichael, Neil Hobden, Dennis Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)
Carter-Jones, Lewis Hooley, Frank Morris, Charles R. (Openshaw)
Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara Horner, John Morris, John (Aberavon)
Conlan, Bernard Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Mulley, Rt. Hn. Frederick
Corbet, Mrs. Freda Howarth, Robert (Bolton, E.) Murray, Albert
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Howie, W. Neal, Harold
Crawshaw, Richard Hoy, Rt. Hn. James Newens, Stan
Cronin, John Hughes, Rt. Hn. Cledwyn (Anglesey) Noel-Baker, Rt.Hn. Philip
Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Oakes, Gordon
Dalyell, Tam Hughes, Roy (Newport) Ogden, Eric
Darling, Rt. Hn. George Hunter, Adam O'Halloran, Michael
Davidson, Arthur (Accrington) Hynd, John O'Malley, Brian
Davies, Ednyfed Hudson (Conway)
Davies, Dr. Ernest (Stretford) Jackson, Colin (B'h'se & Spenb'gh) Oram, Albert E.
Davies, Rt. Hn. Harold (Leek) Jackson, Peter M. (High Peak) Orbach, Maurice
Davies, Ifor (Gower) Jay, Rt. Hn. Douglas Orme, Stanley
Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Jenkins, Hugh (Putney) Oswald, Thomas
Delargy, H. J. Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.) Owen, Will (Morpeth)
Dell, Edmund Johnson, James (K'ston-on-Hull, W.) Padley, Walter
Dempsey, James Jones, Dan (Burnley) Page, Derek (King's Lynn)
Dewar, Donald Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.) Paget, R. T.
Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Palmer, Arthur
Dickens, James Jones, T. Alec (Rhondda, West) Pannell, Rt. Hn. Charles
Dobson, Ray Kelley, Richard Park, Trevor
Doig, Peter Kerr, Dr. David (W'worth, Central) Parker, John (Dagenham)
Driberg, Tom Latham, Arthur Parkyn, Brian (Bedford)
Dunn, James A. Lawson, George Pavitt, Laurence
Dunnett, Jack Lee, Rt. Hn. Jennie (Cannock) Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd)
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth (Exeter) Lee, John (Reading) Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred
Dunwoody, Dr. John (F'lh & C'b'e) Lestor, Miss Joan Pentland, Norman
Eadie, Alex Lever, Rt. Hn. Harold (Cheetham) Perry, Ernest G. (Battersea, S.)
Ellis, John Lewis, Ron (Carlisle) Perry, George H. (Nottingham, S.)
English, Michael Lomas, Kenneth Prentice, Rt. Hn. Reg
Ennals, David Loughlin, Charles Price, Christopher (Perry Barr)
Ensor, David Luard, Evan Price, William (Rugby)
Evans, Fred (Caerphilly) Lyon, Alexander W. (York) Probert, Arthur
Faulds, Andrew Lyons, Edward (Bradford, E.) Randall, Harry
Rankin, John Slater, Joseph Watkins, Tudor (Brecon & Radnor)
Rees, Merlyn Small, William Weitzman, David
Richard, Ivor Snow, Julian Wellbeloved, James
Roberts, Albert (Normanton) Spriggs, Leslie Wells, William (Walsall, N.)
Roberts, Rt. Hn. Goronwy Steele, Thomas (Dunbartonshire, W.) Whitaker, Ben
Roberts, Gwilym (Bedfordshire, S.) Stonehouse, Rt. Hn. John White, Mrs. Eirene
Robertson, John (Paisley) Strauss, Rt. Hn. G. R. Whitlock, William
Robinson, Rt. Hn.Kenneth(St.P'c'as) Swain, Thomas Wilkins, W. A.
Rodgers, William (Stockton) Taverne, Dick Willey, Rt. Hn. Frederick
Roebuck, Roy Thomas, Rt. Hn. Ceorge Williams, Alan (Swansea,W.)
Rogers, George (Kensington, N.) Thomson, Rt. Hn. George Williams, Clifford (Abertillery)
Rose, Paul Thornton, Ernest Williams, Mrs. Shirley (Hitchin)
Ross, Rt. Hn. William Tinn, James Willis, Rt. Hn. George
Rowlands, E. Tomney, Frank Winnick, David
Shaw, Arnold (Ilford, S.) Tuck, Raphael Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A.
Sheldon, Robert Urwin, T. W. Woof, Robert
Shore, Rt. Hn. Peter (Stepney) Varley, Eric G. Wyatt, Woodrow
Short, Mr>. Renée(W'hampton,N.E.) Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)
Silkin, Rt Hn. John (Deptford) Walker, Harold (Doncaster) TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Silverman, Julius Wallace, George Mr. J. D. Concannon and
Skeffington, Arthur Watkins, David (Consett) Mr. Ioan L. Evans.
Alison, Michael (Barkston Ash) Drayson, G. B. Johnston, Russell (Inverness)
Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead) du Cann, Rt. Hn. Edward Jopling, Michael
Amery, Rt. Hon. Julian Eden, Sir John Joseph, Rt. Hn. Sir Keith
Archer, Jeffrey (Louth) Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Kaberry, Sir Donald
Astor, John Emery, Peter Kerby, Capt. Henry
Atkins, Humphrey (M't'n & M'd'n) Errington, Sir Eric Kershaw, Anthony
Baker, Kenneth (Acton) Ewing, Mrs. Winifred Kimball, Marcus
Baker, W. H. K. (Banff) Eyre, Reginald Kitson, Timothy
Balniel, Lord Farr, John Lambton, Viscount
Barber, Ft. Hn. Anthony Fisher, Nigel Lane, David
Batsford, Brian Fletcher-Cooke, Charles Langford-Holt, Sir John
Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton Fortescue, Tim Lawler, Wallace
Belt, Ronald Foster, Sir John Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry
Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay) Fraser,Rt.Hn.Hugh(St'fford & Stone)
Bennett, Or. Reginald (Gos. & Fhm) Fry, Peter Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland)
Berry, Hn. Anthony Galbraith, Hn. T. G. Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey (Sut'nC'dfield)
Bessell, Peter Gibson-Watt, David Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Selwyn (Wirral)
Biffen, John Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk, C.) Longden, Gilbert
Biggs-Davison, John Gilmour, Sir John (Fife, E.) Lubbock, Eric
Birch, Rt. Hn. Nigel Glyn, Sir Richard McAdden, Sir Stephen
Black, Sir Cyril Godber, Rt. Hn. J. B. MacArthur, Ian
Blaker, Peter Goodhart, Philip Mackenzie, Alasdair(Ross & Crom'ty)
Boardman, Tom (Leicester, S.W.) Goodhew, Victor Maclean, Sir Fitzroy
Body, Riehard Cower, Raymond Macleod, Rt. Hn. Iain
Bossom, Sir Clive Grant-Ferris, Sir Robert McMaster, Stanley
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. John Gresham Cooke, R. Macmillan, Maurice (Farnham)
Boyle, Rt. Hn. Sir Edward Grieve, Percy McNair-Wilson, Michael
Brewis, John Grimond, Rt. Hn. J. McNair-Wilson, Patrick (NewForest)
Brinton, Sir Tatton Gurden, Harold Maddan, Martin
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Hall, John (Wycombe) Marples, Rt. Hn. Ernest
Brown, Sir Edward (Bath) Hall-Davis, A. G. F. Marten, Neil
Bruce-Gardyne, J. Hamilton, Lord (Fermanagh) Maudling, Rt. Hn. Reginald
Bryan, Paul Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury) Mawby, Ray
Buchanar-Smith, Alick(Angus, N&M) Harris, Reader (Heston) Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J.
Buck, Antony (Colchester) Harrison, Brian (Maklon) Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C.
Bullus, Sir Eric Harrison, Col, Sir Harwood (Eye) Mills, Peter (Torrington)
Burden, F. A. Harvie Anderson, Mies Mills, Stratton (Belfast, N.)
Campbell, B. (Oldham, W.) Hawkins, Paul Miscampbell, Norman
Campbell, Gordon (Moray & Nairn)
Carlisle, Mark Hay, John Monro, Hector
Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert Heald, Rt. Hn. Sir Lionel Montgomery, Fergus
Channon, H. P. G. Heseltine, Michael More, Jasper
Chataway, Christopher Higgins, Terence L. Morgan-Giles, Rear-Adm.
Chichester-Clark, R. Hiley, Joseph Morrison, Charles (Devizes)
Clegg, Walter Hill, J. E. B. Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles
Cooke, Robert Hirst, Geoffrey Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh
Cordle, John Hogg, Rt. Hn. Quintin Murton, Oscar
Corfield, F. v. Holland, Philip Nabarro, Sir Gerald
Costain, A. P. Hooson, Emlyn Neave, Airey
Craddock, Sir Beresford (Spelthorne) Hordern, Peter Nicholls, Sir Harmar
Crouch, David Hornby, Richard Noble, Rt. Hn. Michael
Crowder, F. P. Howell, David (Guildford) Nott, John
Cunningham, Sir Knox Hunt, John Onslow, Cranley
Dalkeith, Earl of Hutchison, Michael Clark Orr, Capt. L. P. S.
Dance, James Iremonger, T. L. Orr-Ewing, Sir Ian
Davidson, James(Aberdeenshire, W.) Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye) Osborn, John (Hallam)
Dean, Paul Jenkin, Patrick (Woodford) Page, Graham (Crosby)
Dodds-Parker, Douglas Jennings, J. C. (Burton) Page, John (Harrow, W.)
Douglas-Home, Rt. Hn. Sir Alec Johnson Smith, G. (E. Grinstend) Pardoe, John
Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe) Scott-Hopkins, James Waddington, David
Percival, Ian Shaw, Michael (Sc'b'gh & Whitby) Walker, Peter (Worcester)
Pike, Miss Mervyn Silvester, Frederick Walker-Smith, Rt. Hn. Sir Derek
Pink, R. Bonner Sinclair, Sir George Wall, Patrick
Pounder, Rafton Smith, Dudley (W'wick & L'mington) Walters, Dennis
Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch Smith, John (London & W'minster) Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)
Price, David (Eastleigh) Speed, Keith Weatherill, Bernard
Prior, J. M. L. Stainton, Keith Wells, John (Maidstone)
Pym, Francis Steel, David (Roxburgh) Whitelaw, Rt. Hn. William
Wiggin, A. W.
Quennell, Miss J. M. Stodart, Anthony Williams, Donald (Dudley)
Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir M. Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter Summers, Sir Spencer Winstanley, Dr. M. P.
Rees-Davies, W. R. Tapsell, Peter Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick
Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne) Wood, Rt. Hn. Richard
Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon Taylor,Edward M.(G'gow,Cathcart) Woodnutt, Mark
Ridley, Hn. Nicholas Taylor, Frank (Moss Side) Worsley, Marcus
Ridsdale, Julian Temple, John M. Wylie, N. R.
Robson Brown, Sir William Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret Younger, Hn. George
Rossi, Hugh (Hornsey) Tilney, John
Royle, Anthony Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H. TELLERS FOR THE NOES
Russell, Sir Ronald van Straubenzee, W. R. Mr. R.W.Elliott and
Scott, Nicholas Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John Mr. Anthony Grant.

Resolved, That this House congratulates Her Majesty's Government on their achievements in the completion in the four years 1965 to 1968 of factories which in floor space were 25 per cent. greater than in the preceding four years, and 36 per cent. greater than in the preceding four years in terms of the jobs they were expected to provide, in reducing migration from Scotland to the lowest level for 10 years, and in narrowing the gap between Scotland and the United Kingdom in average weekly earnings of adult male workers in manufacturing to 2.4 per cent. compared with 7.3 per cent. in 1964.