Insured Workers, Wales (Migration)

Oral Answers to Questions — Employment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 20th July 1964.

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Photo of Mr Neil McBride Mr Neil McBride , Swansea East 12:00 am, 20th July 1964

asked the Minister of Labour what was the estimated net migration of insured workers from Wales in each calendar year from 1951 to 1963, inclusive.

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

As the answer consists of a table of figures, I will, with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT. I regret that figures for the migration of employees were not produced prior to the year ended June, 1952.

Photo of Mr Neil McBride Mr Neil McBride , Swansea East

I thought the right hon. Gentleman would give an average figure. Has he no policy for retaining these workers in Wales? Are there no proposals for that purpose? In the absence of his giving the figures, has he considered the estimated natural increase in the population of Wales over the next 25 years of 750,000? Have the Government no plans for that? Do the Government consider direction of industry as the aim of their policy?

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

The average figure works out at just under 4,000 a year over the whole period. It has actually been considerably less over the last year or two. The amount of employment in Wales has substantially improved, as the hon. Gentleman will be aware. Therefore, I think that the position generally is not unfavourable at present. Of course, we must go on attracting more industries to these areas, and some of the newer industries there have been very successful.

Photo of Mr Neil McBride Mr Neil McBride , Swansea East

These 4,000 people represent a considerable loss to Wales. Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that depopulation is rife in some parts of the country? Would he not consider some positive measures to arrest the decline in the population represented by the emigration of 4,000 people every year?

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

Yes, Sir. As I said, the average over the last two years has been only half that figure. It has, therefore, been substantially better. We must encourage the newer industries, which are already moving into the area.

Following is the information:

Estimated Net Migration of Employees from Wales
Year ended June(thousands)
1952-1
19534
19548
19555
19567
19574
19583
19592
19605
19614
19622
19632