§ Mr. Lawson
My right hon. and learned Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer met the Staff Sides of the four main Departments in the Treasury area, including that of the Department for National Savings of which the National Savings Bank is a part, on 26 June 1979. At this meeting the options exercise was discussed in general terms. I met the DNS Staff Side on 24 July and my right hon. Friend again met the DNS Staff Side on 22 October at its request. At these latter two meetings the Staff Side was informed that no decisions had yet been reached about possible reductions of functions in the Department in connection with the Government's policy of reducing the size and cost of the public sector.