asked the President of the Board of Trade how many new jobs have been created in the development districts in Fife as a direct result of the operation of the Local Employment Act; and to what extent the creation of these new jobs has been offset by the loss of existing job opportunities.
Of the 2,000 jobs estimated to arise from projects in Fife for which assistance has been offered under the Act about 450 have already arisen. I cannot say how many existing jobs have been lost, but I understand that about 2,000 redundancies have been notified to the Ministry of Labour since April, 1960.
Does not the hon. Gentleman recognise that what is happening in Fife is happening in other parts of Scotland, and, indeed, in other parts of the United Kingdom, where people are dependent on declining basic industries? Is he aware that the measures which the Government introduced in 1960 were blatantly inadequate? Can he give us any hope, even with the newly announced incentives, that the number of new jobs provided will be greater than the increasing number of redundancies which are occurring?
I would not be rash enough to try to forecast precisely how this would work out in any development district, but we very much hope that the results of the improved benefits will be as the hon. Gentleman wants.