HL Deb 15 May 1985 vol 463 cc1152-3

3.2 p.m.

Baroness Seear

My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question standing in the name of my noble friend Lord Winchilsea and Nottingham on the Order Paper:

The Question was as follows:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they propose to take with reference to the Youth Training Scheme, in view of the recently announced rule changes affecting the allocation of the EC's £1.2 billion social fund.

Lord Denham

With his permission, my Lords? At his request?

Baroness Seear

Yes, my Lords.

The Minister Without Portfolio (Lord Young of Graffham)

My Lords, no decision has yet been made on the amount of money which the social fund will allocate to the Youth Training Scheme in 1985. The European Commission has recently announced some changes in the fund guidelines for 1986, but it is too soon to say how these will affect Community support for the scheme.

Lord Bruce of Donington

My Lords, in view of the fact that successive Governments have not taken any account of the additionality principle as laid down by the Commission and have in fact determined their own expenditure on the basis of what contributions were coming from the Community in one form or another, will the noble Lord give the House an assurance that if the amounts received from the Community are rather less than that for which the Government budgeted when fixing their own expenditure, the Government will increase the expenditure by the amount by which the contributions from the EC fall short of the originally anticipated total?

Lord Young of Graffham

My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Bruce of Donington, for that question. The Government are always deeply conscious of the contribution made by the social fund. Nevertheless, the Government have made their plans for the Youth Training Scheme and do not intend to depart from them.

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