§ Mr. Bates
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the number of people employed in the building industry at the latest date for which figures are available; what are his estimates for each quarter of the coming year; and what measures he intends to take to stimulate demand in the industry.
§ Mr. Freeson
It is provisionally estimated by the Department that the number of people employed in the construction industry in Great Britain in May 1974 was about 1.8 million of whom about 1.4 million were employees—operatives and administrative, professional, technical and clerical staff—and about 0.4 million were working proprietors and self-employed operatives. It is not possible40W to give reliable estimates for each quarter of the coming year. The initiatives which the Government have taken to encourage public and private house building should help those sectors. The position in the construction industry generally is being closely watched.