§ Motion made, and Question proposed,
§ That the draft Mineworkers' Pension Scheme (Limit on Contributions) Order 1980, which was laid before this House on 11 March, be approved.—[Mr. John Moore.]
§ Mr. Deputy Speaker (Mr. Bernard Weatherill)
It will be for the convenience of the House to discuss with this the second motion.
§ Mr. Alex Eadie (Midlothian)
It is not the intention of the Opposition to retard the progress of the two orders. However, a number of my hon. Friends feel that it might have been better if we had discussed the outstanding progress that the mining industry has made. Productivity is increasing and absenteeism has been substantially reduced. Also, the great investment in technology has paid off, in that it has been a good investment for the nation and for the miners.
As I have said, we do not intend to impede the progress of the two orders. However, I should like to ask the Under-Secretary one question. We are cooperating in facilitating the business of the House. That is why we are trying to exercise the utmost expedition. Even though the Minister moved the order formally, I appreciate that it was not because he was reluctant to argue the case.
My question relates to the payment of the increases. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman can write to me on it. I hope that in no way will the increases be related to what we have heard recently about the Government's views on various methods of payment. If the hon. Gentleman has anything to convey about that, perhaps he will write to me.
§ The Under-Secretary of State for Energy (Mr. John Moore)
I thank the hon. Member for Midlothian (Mr. Eadie) for his comments. I endorse entirely what he said about the splendid progress towards profitability in the coal industry 1067 and the excellent increases in productivity. I shall, of course, write to him on the detailed point that he raised.
§ I commend the orders to the House.
§ Question put and agreed to.
That the draft Redundant Mineworkers and Concessionary Coal (Payments Schemes) (Amendment) Order 1980, which was laid before this House on 11 March, be approved.—[Mr. John Moore.]