HC Deb 20 February 1969 vol 778 c749
11. Mr. Hall-Davis

asked the Secretary of State for Economic Affairs whether he will set up an independent inquiry to investigate the cost-effectiveness of the Government's regional economic policies.

Mr. Urwin

No, Sir.

Mr. Hall-Davis

What evidence on this subject has the Department submitted to the Hunt Committee, and will the hon. Gentleman publish it?

Mr. Urwin

It is not the responsibility of my Department to submit evidence to the Hunt Committee. The evidence is submitted by a number of bodies, and we shall consider the recommendations as soon as we have them.

Mr. Mikardo

Since the Government are giving to private enterprise subsidies in one form or another of between £6,000 and £10,000 for every new job it creates in the regions, would my hon. Friend study the cost effectiveness of starting selective public enterprises in the regions—or is that ruled out precisely because it was the policy of the Labour Party to which my hon. Friend, in a previous incarnation, made such a notable contribution?

Mr. Urwin

I assure my hon. Friend that the matter to which he refers is not by any means ruled out, but he will appreciate that there are certain practical problems.