HC Deb 29 July 1965 vol 717 cc152-3W
27. Mr. Wall

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he will now authorise the laying down of a prototype nuclear-propelled surface vessel.

Mr. Jay

The Government have carefully reviewed the possible advantages of building a prototype nuclear merchant ship. They have decided that the prospects of building a ship that would be economic to operate arm, as yet, too remote to justify the large Government expenditure necessary to build a prototype. The Atomic Energy Authority will, however, continue to explore methods of improving the economics of the present types of small reactors and to examine new ways of bringing an economic nuclear merchant ship nearer. I shall also shortly be discussing with the industries concerned the establishment of a Committee to keep developments under review.