§ Mr. Geraint Howells
asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will assess the impact of the increase in the price of petrol on the rural areas of Wales; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. John Stradling Thomas
I recognise the importance of transport costs in rural areas and understand the concern expressed about the recent increases, though in fact the increases have been smaller than at first anticipated. It is difficult to assess in detail the impact of these increases on particular areas of activity because circumstances can vary markedly, but I would not expect the impact overall to be substantial.