§ Mr. Kilroy-Silk
asked the Secretary of State for Industry what powers there are to establish a loan guarantee scheme for small companies on an experimental basis in the United Kingdom.
§ Mr. Cryer
There are no statutory powers to give guarantees under a general scheme open to all small firms in the United Kingdom. Under Section 7 of the Industry Act 1972, though only in the assisted areas, it is possible to give loan guarantees in connection with projects that satisfy the employment creation and maintenance provisions of that section. We have recently introduced a scheme of guarantees for European Investment Bank loans on these lines.