§ Mr. Normanton
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what progress he has made in the negotiations with the European Commission for the provision of payments to help redundant steel workers to which he referred in his White Paper on the British Steel Corporation's 10-year development strategy.
§ Mr. Tom Boardman
The Government have concluded an agreement with the European Commission under which financial aid from Community funds will be available to provide benefits to redundant steelworkers who qualify under Article 56 of the Treaty of Paris. These benefits include payments, over a period, designed to bring a man's or woman's current earnings up to 90 per cent. of previous earnings; allowances sufficient to secure no loss of income, over a period, for those undergoing retraining; and resettlement and removal grants. There will also be benefits for those who remain unemployed and older men may opt to commute these into an annuity or pension.
Regulations to enable the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry to pay these benefits will be laid before Parliament in due course.