§ Mr. Joseph Dean
asked the Secretary of State for Industry what effect his statement of 17 July and the accompanying written answer will have on the areas of Yorkshire and Humberside, in terms of financial resources and jobs, with special reference to the textile and clothing manufacturing industries.
§ Mr. David Mitchell,
pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 23 July 1979; Vol. 971, c. 15], gave the following answer:
The changes in regional policy announced in the House by my right hon. Friend on 17 July, including the immediate upgradings of Mexborough and Rotherham to development areas, will ensure that assistance will be concentrated on those areas of Yorkshire and Humberside and elsewhere that are in greatest need. Most employees in the tex- 168W tile and clothing firms in the region are in West Yorkshire. The whole of that county will continue to receive the benefits of regional development grants for one year, while in those areas due to be downgraded firms will be eligible for other regional incentives for a further two years. It is not possible to predict what effect, if any, the eventual cessation of regional assistance in a particular area will have on employment there.
Selective financial assistance under section 8 of the Industry Act 1972 will continue to be available both in the assisted areas and elsewhere but on a more selective basis than hitherto. The scheme of assistance directed at the textile and clothing industries had, however, been closed for applications since December 1977.