asked the Secretary of State for Air whether he is now in a position to state the results of the conversations between His Majesty's Government and the aircraft manufacturers with a view to the prevention of undue profit being made out of the expansion of the Air Force; and what steps the Government propose to take in the matter?
There has been established in the Air Ministry a comprehensive machinery, evolved in consultation with the Treasury, covering the whole range of contracts and providing for the control of prices by technical costings and similar methods. This is, of course, being fully employed. In addition, as the House is aware, the Ministry now have the great advantage of Lord Weir's constant advice, and I hope also to have the assistance of several gentlemen whose past and present experience make them particularly qualified to advise on these commercial and financial questions.
The whole object is to ensure that one does not have any excessive profit. I am sure the House realise that, dealing with a very complex variety of contracts with differing circumstances in each, it is impossible to lay down hard and fast rules. What you have to do, in the interests of the public and of the industry, is to get the very best advice you possibly can.
Would the right hon. Gentleman provide the House with a Paper showing the instructions and powers of the officers of his Department appointed to deal with this matter?