HL Deb 30 October 1975 vol 365 cc700-1

[No. 3]

Clause 1, page 2, line 6, leave out from first ("promote") to end of line 9 and insert ("industrial democracy in undertakings which the Agency control;").


I beg to move that this House doth agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 3. The Government made clear their intention to introduce this Amendment and to restore to the Bill the responsibility of the Agency to help promote industrial democracy. The Government believe in the need to extend the concept and the use of industrial democracy in both public and private sectors, and it is a tribute to the importance of the Welsh Development Agency that they will be among the first to have the opportunity to implement the Government's proposals. We discussed this matter at great length in consideration of the Commons Amendments during both the Industry Bill and the Scottish Development Agency Bill. There are parallel Amendments in both Bills.

Moved, That this House doth agree with the Commons in the said Amendment.—(Lord Lovell-Davis.)


My Lords, like the noble Lord, Lord Lloyd of Kilgerran, I do not propose to do more than speak to two or three of these Amendments because they are similar to the ones which we have discussed today on two earlier Bills. But I must on this occasion, where the definition of" industrial democracy" is lacking and yet the term is being introduced into the Bill, draw attention to what the noble Lord, Lord Beswick, said earlier today. When he was dealing with this point on the Industry Bill he admitted that industrial democracy was not at present clear as a concept; it was something that still had to be examined and, as we have pointed out, it has a different meaning for different people. So we feel unhappy, as many noble Lords in different parts of this House did, in introducing such a vague term into legislation. With that reservation, however, we do not intend to oppose it at this stage.


My Lords, we also have some reservations about certain clauses, including this clause, but do not want to press the matter. However, I should have said in my earlier intervention that we on these Benches feel that the great defect of the Bill is that there is no reference to a Welsh Assembly. It is unity in Wales which is required if we are to deal with the economic problems with which Wales is now beset, and particularly if we are to make Wales more attractive so that the young will remain in their environment rather than leave Wales.

On Question, Motion agreed to.