§ Mr. Ian Taylor
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment what discussions have taken place as to the feasibility of introducing an employee share ownership scheme in any future privatisation that his Department may sponsor.
§ Mr. Ridley
In his reply on 15 March to a written question by my hon. Friend the Member for Gainsborough and Horncastle (Mr. Leigh), at column238, my hon. and learned Friend the Minister for Water and Planning announced that there will be special share offer arrangements for the employees of the new water plcs when the present water authorities are floated later this year. Discussions are in progress between my Department and the Water Authorities Association on the establishment of share schemes, approved by the Inland Revenue, as part of those share arrangements.
In his statement to the House on 3 February 1988 at column 983 my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State, the Member for Southampton, Itchen (Mr. Chope) made it clear that in evaluating private sector bids for the Crown Suppliers he would pay particular attention to proposals for the involvement of the staff in the success of the enterprise.