HC Deb 19 November 1973 vol 864 cc938-9
16. Mr. Marten

x asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the total amount of Government aid in all its aspects to industry in the last 12 months.

Mr. Peter Walker

All expenditure by my Department is in one form or another designed to assist industry. In the 12 months to the end of September this year, the total expenditure by my Department was approximately £1,000 million. I will send my hon. Friend a detailed breakdown of this expenditure.

Mr. Marten

I thank my right hon. Friend for that Answer. The Question was phrased in a difficult way for his Department to understand. Will the sum which we are likely to get from the Common Market Regional Fund, which will be relatively small compared with the enormous figure my right hon. Friend mentioned, be dovetailed in with the large amount of Government aid?

Mr. Walker

My hon. Friend will know that negotiations on the amount involved have not been finally concluded. When that has been done we shall fit it into the general regional policy.

Mr. Dell

Has the right hon. Gentleman seen the recent comment made by the Chairman of the CEGB to the effect that public money should he injected into North Sea oil development? So that such development should not be at the mercy of the resources and priorities of the oil companies, has he any comment to make about that?

Mr. Walker

A considerable amount of money has been put into North Sea oil development. One of the activities of my Department has been to promote the use of British industry, which has obtained considerable benefit from that development.

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