HC Deb 10 November 1971 vol 825 c1014
22. Mr. Sillars

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what recent initiatives he has taken to establish fuller employment in Scotland.

Mr. Gordon Campbell

Within my own field of responsibility, the additional works programme which I announced in July will involve expenditure to an amount of £60 million in Scotland. In addition, special Government assistance is being made available for projects in West Central Scotland estimated to cost £17 million. Other measures have been taken by the Ministers concerned to reduce unemployment in Scotland.

Mr. Sillars

May I call the Secretary of State's attention back to West Central Scotland and Question No. 16, dealing with Hunterston? Is he aware that our suspicions were aroused by his constant avoidance of mention of steel in reference to Hunterston? Does he recall that his rejection of the Chevron project was on the basis that he was reserving the Hunterston peninsula for a new green field steel development? Were our suspicions correct, after all, that as one of the first consequences of entry into the Common Market, we shall not get it?

Mr. Campbell

Entry to the Common Market has nothing to do with it, as far as I can see. My planning decision opened the way to the development of a major steel complex. That was a decision of last December. The question of a major complex of the kind which I think the hon. Gentleman has in mind must be part of the British Steel Corporation's long-term plan. It is still considering its investment programme, and the Government have not yet been able to consider it.