HC Deb 20 April 1972 vol 835 cc745-6
Q5. Mr. Joel Barnett

asked the Prime Minister if he is satisfied with the co-ordination between the Departments of Trade and Industry and of Employment in respect of industrial development.

Mr. Maudling

I have been asked to reply.

Yes, Sir.

Mr. Barnett

Because of the willingness of the Government to admit that they must reverse their policies, and because previous answers given by the Prime Minister have left companies which had been intending to go into development areas in doubt, may I ask the right hon. Gentleman to make it absolutely clear that even if they make losses in the initial years they will still receive the cash grants which the Government are now introducing?

Mr. Maudling

That will have to be considered in the debate on the legisla- tion authorising the introduction of that change.

Mr. Redmond

Is my right hon. Friend aware that the industrial development committee of Bolton has passed a special resolution thanking the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry for giving us intermediate area status? Is he further aware that already there are appearances of a shortage of labour in certain industries and skills, in spite of the appalling general total of unemployment in the area?

Mr. Maudling

I am glad to hear that from my hon. Friend.

Mr. Charles R. Morris

Will the right hon. Gentleman draw the attention of the Prime Minister to the fact that a host of factories in my constituency and in the greater Manchester area generally have been subject to industrial dispute for a period of many weeks, that as a consequence the families of many of my constituents are suffering considerably and that there has been an absence of co-ordination between the Department of Employment and the Department of Trade and Industry in regard to this dispute? Will he urge the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Employment to take action to conciliate in this dispute?

Mr. Maudling

I have noticed, as we all have, some of these actions in the Manchester area. We have also noticed from where they are being stimulated—[Interruption.] We all share the view that action of this type bears heavily on the families of those concerned.