HC Deb 10 April 1984 vol 58 cc193-4
Q3. Mr. Renton

asked the Prime Minister whether she will make a statement on the future of the National Economic Development Council.

The Prime Minister

I regret that the TUC has chosen to forgo the benefits to its membership of participation in the council. We have no intention, however, of taking hasty decisions, especially since the work of the economic development committees has not been affected.

Mr. Renton

Would my right hon. Friend care to remind the TUC of Clem Attlee's maxim, "Never walk out because you will only have to walk back"? While the TUC is sulking in its tent, will she and the Chancellor consider how the work of NEDC can be improved and made more useful, for example by studying which are the services and industries in which Britain must be competitive in the 1990s, and how to achieve this?

The Prime Minister

I very much endorse the views of my hon. Friend. As he knows, the TUC walked out at the very time when a review of the industries of the 1990s was being undertaken for the purposes that my hon. Friend deduces—a review which the TUC had enthusiastically endorsed. I hope that it will soon come back to take part in it.

Mr. Tony Banks

Modesto Collados, the new Minister of Industry in Chile, said last week that Chile can live——

Mr. Speaker

Order. I think that the hon. Gentleman may have the wrong question. The question is concerned with NEDC.

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