HC Deb 04 April 1974 vol 871 cc1436-7
Q1. Mr. Duffy

asked the Prime Minister when he next expects to have talks with the Confederation of British Industry about industrial relations.

The Prime Minister (Mr. Harold Wilson)

I have no further meetings planned at present but my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Employment met representatives of the CBI on Monday to discuss this matter, and I chaired yesterday's meeting of the National Economic Development Council.

Mr. Duffy

In view of the TUC's promise yesterday to fulfil its part of the social contract, will my right hon. Friend now look to the CBI for a corresponding response in respect not only of price restraint but of workers' participation in management and control? Is my right hon. Friend aware that one reason for this country lagging behind some of the EEC countries in this regard is that employers are dragging their feet?

The Prime Minister

All who attended the NEDC meeting yesterday felt that it was one of the most successful for a long time. Both the CBI and the TUC are anxious to start work on a bilateral basis to improve the climate of industrial relations and the existing machinery.

Mr. McCrindle

Is the right hon. Gentleman satisfied with the progress being made towards a social contract? Does he not envisage the necessity for two versions—one for the TUC and the other for Mr. Hugh Scanlon?

The Prime Minister

No. If the hon. Gentleman had been able to be present at NEDC yesterday he would not have put that question.