HC Deb 21 January 1970 vol 794 cc494-5
13. Mr. Galbraith

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if, arising from his study of the matter, he will make an estimate of the final infrastructure costs falling upon public authorities for a green field steel work and an oil complex such as are proposed for the Hunterston peninsula.

Mr. Ross

The form of any development affects the infrastructure requirements, and I cannot make a realistic estimate of their costs until I have considered the report on the public inquiry now in progress.

Mr. Galbraith

Is it not very unsatisfactory in that we hear about these various schemes which are likely to go forward but when I asked the right hon. Gentleman how much money in grant would be involved, he was not able to tell me? Now he cannot tell what the infrastructure costs will be. It is impossible to come to wise decisions on whether or not industry should go to the area unless we know the costs in infrastructure and what will be the grants.

Mr. Ross

All we want to do at present is to give a wise land use decision, and this is what has to be considered at present. It is impossible to relate it now to other factors, be they investment grants, which are not my responsibility, or infrastructure costs. These are far more detailed matters.

Mr. Manuel

In relation to infrastructure costs, can my right hon. Friend indicate what, if the industrial complex came into being, would be the uplift in added wages and salaries for North Ayrshire?

Mr. Ross

There are not only that but other aspects, such as assessment and valuation. It is not possible for me to answer my hon. Friend's supplementary question at present.

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