HC Deb 22 December 1983 vol 51 c554
9. Mr. Martin Stevens

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many contracts with Mercury have been entered into by Her Majesty's Government or by publicly-owned bodies.

Mr. Moore

Mercury's service has only just become available, on a limited geographical basis. As yet, therefore, no contracts with Mercury have been entered into by Government Departments. Where Mercury can offer the particular services required it will be given the opportunity to tender in the normal way.

Mr. Stevens

I thank my hon. Friend for that reply. Is he satisfied that the Central Computer Telecommunications Agency is operating in a sufficiently entrepreneurial form? Will he direct it to seek competitive tenders at all times and improve its performance in what appears to be a somewhat bureaucratic form of ordering?

Mr. Moore

I am happy to assure my hon. Friend that it is normal Government practice to secure competitive tenders. To the extent to which the CCTA already follows normal Government practice, I am sure that my hon. Friend will be satisfied.