§ Mr. McMaster
asked the Minister of Technology whether he has reached a decision on the interim finance needed by Short Brothers and Harland Limited while their proposals for financing their long-term programme are being considered.
§ Mr. Benn
Yes. As the House was informed on 24th June, 1968 a firm of chartered accountants has been asked to assist my Department in considering Shorts' long-term proposals. I expect to receive their report by the middle of August and decisions will be taken as 279W soon as possible thereafter. In order to supplement the working capital of the company in the meanwhile, my Department is offering a loan of £1 million. A Supplementary Estimate for this sum will be presented in due course; in the meantime an advance will be made from the Civil Contingencies Fund.—[Vol. 767, c. 15–16.]