§ Mr. Gordon Prentice
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what steps he is taking to ensure that long-term finance is available to the British aerospace industry to ensure high-level research and development.
§ Mr. Sainsbury
My Department is committed to continuing the successful partnership between Government and the British aerospace industry. It recognises the importance of supporting long-term research in the industry while working towards a progressive reduction in state aids.
Since 1979, the Department of Trade and Industry has made over £1.5 billion available in repayable launch aid, regional development grants and in support for the civil aircraft research and demonstration programme.