HC Deb 08 April 1982 vol 21 c1082
14. Mr. Kenneth Carlisle

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will keep under review the possibility of further encouraging employee share ownership.

Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

Yes, Sir, but my hon. Friend will be aware that we have already given substantial encouragement to employee share schemes.

Mr. Carlisle

Although I welcome the progress in profit-sharing schemes made under this Government, does not my hon. Friend recognise that in reality these schemes are confined to those who work for larger companies? Therefore, before the next Budget, will he seek ways to extend the advantages to all employees in the market sector so that, for example, small firms can start schemes and many more employees can feel that they have a stake in the success of their enterprise?

Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

The Government entirely share my hon. Friend's enthusiasm for employee participation via share option schemes and are deeply grateful to my hon. Friend for the work that he has done on this subject. I have studied carefully the proposition that he put forward in his recent Adjournment debate, which, broadly speaking, called for an opportunity for employees in unquoted companies to participate in a share option scheme with the shares in a range of other companies. He will appreciate that that has a rather different purpose, in that it does not involve the employee directly in the fortunes of the business concerned, and it would create considerable problems between those who were entitled to benefit under such a scheme and those who were not.