HC Deb 30 June 1977 vol 934 cc542-3
Q5. Mr. Ward

asked the Prime Minister when he last met the CBI.

The Prime Minister

I refer my hon. Friend to the reply which I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Thornaby (Mr. Wrigglesworth) on 17th February.

Mr. Ward

As I am not able to refer immediately to that answer, will the Prime Minister say whether he has discussed with the CBI its latest statement of intention to invest? Did he put to it the view of the Leader of the Opposition that the only financial incentive at present is to disinvest? Does he agree that the figures of the CBI show burgeoning expansion of investment by British industry?

The Prime Minister

When I meet the CBI from time to time, this issue is discussed. It was discussed when I met industrial leaders 10 days ago to consider industrial strategy. There are signs of a beginning of an increase in investment, and the signs for 1978 are that it will be very substantial indeed. I hope that these intentions will be carried through.

Mr. Tapsell

When the Prime Minister next meets the CBI will he feel it his duty to tell it that in his opinion, whatever the merits of what has been going on inside Grunwick, he regards the scenes outside as representing the unacceptable face of trade unionism?

The Prime Minister

I am quite capable of making my own comments to the CBI on these matters, just as I have made them in the House on many occasions. The hon. Member does not make it any better by asking me to repeat them now.