§ Mr. Tom King
asked the Secretary of State for Industry (1) whether he has yet received the results from the Post Office for the last financial year; and if he will make a statement;
Mr. R. C. Mitchell
asked the Secretary of State for Industry if he will make a statement about the profit of the Post Office in 1975–76.
§ Mr. Varley
In its accounts, published today, the Post Office reports a profit for the year ended 31st March 1976 of £148 million. This represents a great improvement in the Post Office's financial position since last year's loss of more than £300 million; I should like to acknowledge the contribution of all concerned in the Post Office. I also welcome today's statement by the Chairman of the Post Office that the existing standstill on telecommunications charges until 31st March 1977 will be extended to 31st July 1977. In view of the need to finance the investment programme of about £1,000 million a year without additional demands on the taxpayer or additional borrowing. I do not intend to exercise my powers under the Price Code to order a reduction in telecommunications charges.