§ Mr. David Steel
asked the Prime Minister whether, as a matter of policy, she will instruct Government Departments to ensure that a fair share of their newspaper advertising appears in the ethnic minority press.
§ The Prime Minister
The basis on which all Government advertising is placed is that the limited funds available must be spent in order to obtain the best possible value for money in terms of the cost of space in relation to the target audience. Successsive Governments have upheld the principle that advertising funds are not spent to subsidise newspapers, whatever their status.
Ethnic newspapers are included in advertising schedules when they are required to meet the needs of an individual campaign: and the Central Office of Information is currently discussing with the Commission for Racial Equality a means of establishing objective data about readership and circulation levels of the ethnic press to make possible a more reliable assessment of the coverage that they would contribute to an advertising schedule.