§ Mr. Bill Walker
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland when he intends to publish the results of research into consumer satisfaction with services following the introduction of compulsory competitive tendering.
§ Mr. Allan Stewart
My right hon. Friend has today published the report on market research, conducted in nine Scottish local authorities by the MVA Consultancy, into consumer satisfaction with refuse collection and street cleaning services both before and after the introduction of competitive tendering for those services. Copies have been placed in the Library of the House.
The report shows little change in consumer satisfaction. Where change has occurred it has generally been for the better. The results of the research support the Government's view that competitive tendering can bring benefits without an unacceptable reduction in service standards. They provide no comfort to those who have claimed that saving from competitive tendering have been secured at the expense of quality of service.