HC Deb 28 March 1983 vol 40 c48W
Mr. Best

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if the final result of the survey of land tenure in the Falkland Islands, based on a questionnaire circulated among agricultural workers in the islands, is now available; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Onslow

Towards the end of last year, the Falkland Islands Government circulated a questionnaire to 300 workers in the agricultural sector asking them whether and where they would like to buy a piece of farmland. The BBC's Panorama programme of 14 February suggested that the result of the questionnaire showed that two out of every three islanders so questioned wished to purchase land. In fact, by 28 February—the deadline set for the return of completed questionnaires—only 59 replies had been received, all indicating an interest in buying land. This is a proportion of about one in five of those questioned.

The Government believe that this result, considered in relation to the amount of land already or likely to become available on the open market, confirms the validity of the gradual approach to land redistribution described by my right hon. Friend in his statement to the House on 8 December—[Vol. 33, c. 859–868].