§ Mr. Butcher
As my right hon. and learned Friend told the House during his statement on 12 January, we have decided that research and development which is at the 351W stage of commercial exploitation should be the responsibility of the private sector. Therefore, the general schemes of single company support for innovation were closed to new applications at 18.00 hours on 12 January. Formal applications received before then will be appraised under the schemes as they existed previously. The schemes covered are support for innovation, the microelectronics industry support programme, support for software products support, and the fibre-optics and optoelectronics scheme.