HC Deb 18 December 1963 vol 686 cc235-6W
Mr. Longden

asked the Secretary of State for Industry, Trade and Regional Development what practical steps have been and are being taken by Her Majesty's Government to discourage the movement of population to the South-East.

Mr. Heath

Industrial development certificates are not granted for projects which would significantly increase employment in the South East. In addition, the Government have taken a wide range of measures to steer industry from the South East to the development districts. By the provision of Board of Trade factories and financial assistance under the Local Employment Act, 1960, we have in the past 3½ years aided the establishment or expansion of projects to provide over 100,000 jobs in the development districts. Since the introduction of standard grants under the Local Employment Act, 1963, and of the free depreciation scheme applications for such assistance have increased very substantially. Furthermore, the comprehensive programmes for development and growth which are now in hand in Central Scotland and North East England may be expected to bring about a significant reduction in the movement of population to the South East.