§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Minister of Technology if he will give the reasons why he has permitted the British Motor Corporation to increase the prices of certain of their vehicles in view of the Government's refusal to allow car workers and others wage increases; whether these increases are in accordance with the Government's policy of severe restraint; and whether he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Benn
I am satisfied from discussions between my Department and the British Motor Corporation that these increases are justified on grounds of increased costs which the company is not able to absorb fully and that without some increase in prices the company's receipts would not be adequate to maintain efficiency and to undertake necessary investment. The increases therefore satisfy the criteria of the White Paper on the Period of Severe Restraint (Cmnd. 3150).