§ Mr. David Steel
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will call for a report from the High Commission in Sri Lanka on the labour and wages policies of British firms in the country.
§ Mr. George Rodgers
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will now take steps to institute an inquiry into the conditions under which tea plantations owned by British companies are administered.
§ Mrs. Ann Taylor
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if, through British representatives in Sri Lanka, he will institute an inquiry into the wages and living conditions of employees of British companies and their subsidiaries who are engaged in tea planting in Sri Lanka, with a view to giving advice to these companies; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Clinton Davis
I have been asked to reply.298W
The Government are much concerned by recent reports about conditions which are said to exist on British owned tea plantations in Sri Lanka. My right hon. Friend the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs is endeavouring to discover the facts of the situation, and has also asked a delegation of hon. Members who will shortly be visiting Sri Lanka to look into conditions on the estates. In the light of these reports my Department wil decide whether further action needs to be taken.