HC Deb 20 February 1989 vol 147 cc693-4
3. Mr. Gregory

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is the number of applicants for section 4 grants under the Development of Tourism Act 1969, the number approved and the value awarded, for each year since 1980; and if he will make a statement.

The Minister of State, Welsh Office (Mr. Wyn Roberts)

With permission, Mr. Speaker, I shall circulate the information in the Official Report and I shall also place a copy in the Library.

Mr. Gregory

I thank my hon. Friend for that answer. Will he confirm that hoteliers and those who so successfully manage tourist attractions in Wales will not suffer the problems that beset their colleagues in England because of the Secretary of State for Employment who has suspended section 4 assistance? Will he confirm that section 4 is of great value to the Principality?

Mr. Roberts

I can certainly confirm that there has been a considerable increase in the number of applications for section 4 assistance from 1980–81, when there were 160 applications, to the current year's forecast of 224 applications. Of course, the number of applications approved has increased over the years, as has the assistance offered. I can also confirm that the section 4 scheme is not being suspended in Wales. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Employment made his statement on 31 January suspending, as I understand it, further applications for section 4 assistance in England.

Following is the information.

Development of Tourism Act 1969 Section 4 assistance
Number of applications Number approved Assistance offered £ million
1980–81 outturn 160 43 1.6
1981–82 outturn 190 113 2.2
1982–83 outturn 158 55 1.6
1983–84 outturn 171 56 1.9
1984–85 outturn 224 87 2.2
1985–86 outturn 239 162 3.5
1986–87 outturn 207 145 3.5
1987–88 outturn 168 119 2.5
1988–89 forecast 224 150 3.4