§ Mr. Milne
asked the Secretary of State for Economic Affairs if he will make a statement on the progress of the work of his Department in regard to its regional development policy and, in particular, in the provision of new jobs to counteract the present and future contraction of the mining industry.
§ Mr. Urwin
Expenditure on regional policy is currently running at nearly £300 million a year. As the pace of the economy quickens with the expansion of exports the existing measures should have increasing effect. My right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade announced on 14th November last year new measures to help the areas that would be particularly adversely affected by the rundown in the coal industry. These need to be given time in which to operate, but the results so far are encouraging.