62. Mr. Brian Harrison
asked the Minister of Power whether, in view of the fact that the National Coal Board's interest in trade undertakings were not in 1966–67 yielding more than 2.35 per cent. he will introduce legislation requiring future proposals by the Board for such investments to be laid before Parliament, in a manner similar to that proposed under the Industrial Expansion Bill.
§ Mr. Freeson
No. Investment by the National Coal Board in trade undertakings, within the powers conferred on the Board under the Coal Industry Nationalisation Act, 1946, is not comparable with the Government's financial support for industry contemplated in the Industrial Expansion Bill. I do not accept the premise on which the Question is based as relevant or accurate. As explained in the Board's published report for 1966–67, a substantial part of its investment in trade undertakings was made during that year and was for projects under development from which no immediate return could be expected.