§ Mr. Bruce-Gardyne
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will give an estimate of the indirect and direct cumulative cost in a full year to 180W the agricultural industry of the 7 per cent. Bank Rate, the increase in petrol duty and the import surcharges.
§ Mr. John Mackie
The direct cost of the increase in petrol duty is estimated at about £2½ million. A similar estimate for the other items cannot yet be made: I would refer the hon. Member to the replies given by my right hon. Friend to the hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Prior) on 25th November and the right hon. Member for Bedford (Mr. Soames) on 2nd December. It is not possible to say to what extent farmers' costs may be affected indirectly.