§ Mr. Randall
asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what number and percentage of works in the construction industry in the North-East in May 1965 were wholly unemployed; and what action he has taken to reduce the unemployment in this industry in the North-East.
§ Mr. Boyden
In May 4,929 workers in the construction industry in the North-East were unemployed; this was about 5 per cent. of the number employed in the region. The figures show a substantial reduction compared with May last year when unemployment was about 7 per cent. Fewer than 800 of the unemployed in May this year were craftsmen and for bricklayers, carpenters, plumbers and glaziers, vacancies equalled or exceeded the numbers unemployed.
It is the Government's policy to increase the proportion of public investment spent in the North-East and it is a major objective of the Government's regional strategy to make the fullest use of available resources in this region and elsewhere.