I beg to move, That a sum, not exceeding £1,488,000, be granted for the said Service.
As we have not been provided with the documents on which we usually base our debate on this subject, I do not think that anyone can take offence at the fact that we have sought to reduce the amount involved. It is a matter of considerable disappointment to Scottish Members that in this the last and most important debate for Scotland in this Parliament we should be without the information on which we usually base our discussion.
When we add to that the fact that the Board of Trade has not yet produced the annual report on the Local Employment Act, to which no doubt considerable reference will be made, you, Sir William, will appreciate the extent of the difficulty in which we have been placed. I know that last year that document was not available until 30th July, but to make this debate substantial, and so that we could check and analyse some of the figures which will be thrown at us, it would have been far better if we had been armed with the relevant documents.
I said that this is the last important Scottish debate in his Parliament. It will not be the last important Scottish debate. The debate will be carried from here during the coming weeks into the highways and byways of Scotland. But, lest anyone should think that this is purely a Scottish debate, let me remind hon. Members opposite that our concern for the well-being of Scotland is not selfish. The difficulties of Scotland today spring from the Government's failure to give us policies adequate to the needs of the whole of Britain. Indeed, that failure in other parts of the country has exaggerated the difficulties in Scotland.
I am sorry that we are not to have an all-Scottish debate. I understand that my speech is to be followed by a speech from the Secretary of State for Industry, Trade and Regional Development and all the rest—fresh from his triumphs over the small shopkeeper, the "gateway theatre" production. But we have had another and important accession to the Scottish Tory group during the last year—the Prime Minister. He has not made a single speech in the House on Scottish affairs. When we appreciate the difficulty that he has in answering Questions, and the ignorance which he shows about Scottish affairs, we can understand it; but he has a duty to Scotland and to his own constituency.
The Prime Minister makes speeches outside this Chamber—at the Bull Ring at Perth and the Playhouse in Glasgow. There, behind the potted palms and before the well-cushioned matrons of the Unionist Party, he is a very bold and brave man. What about the House of Commons? Where is the right hon. Gentleman? This reminds me of those words from "Alice in Wonderland":
When the sands are all dry, he is gay as a lark,
And will talk in contemptuous tones of the Shark.
But, when the tide rises and the sharks are around
His voice has a timid and tremulous sound.
As a matter of fact, we do not hear it at all.
I have only just started and I do not want at present to give way to the inheritor of the largest landed estates in Scotland. I am only a humble peasant. We do not want one earl to come to the rescue of an ex-earl just at the moment.
In Glasgow, in February this year, the Prime Minister said that after 12 years of Conservative government the young and vigorous people were going places in Scottish industry. Indeed, they are going places. Over the last 13 years. 345,000 people have left Scotland. We have experienced a natural increase of population of over that amount. Our population is static because conditions in Scotland have been such that people have had to leave Scotland to find work, homes and a future. This is the kernel of the debate.
What will we get from the Secretary of State? We will get discriminating, selective statistics.
The right hon. Gentleman will talk about prospects, applications, jobs in the pipeline, millions of sq. ft—the lot. Then we shall have a sermon. I warn the right hon. Gentleman: if he has a sermon in his brief, he should score it out. We do not want sermons from him about my hon. Friends and I promoting decline, and being dismal jimmies, because may I remind him that this year is the 650th anniversary of Bannockburn. I remind him of what happened to a proud Edward on that day. Let him be warned in time.
Scotland is a proud nation. We are confident of our own abilities, given a chance, the opportunity and the circumstances. We in Scotland want that chance and opportunity so that we can play our full part in the regeneration of Great Britain. We welcome all the hard work which has been done over the past few years, even by the Board of Trade. The new industries which have gone to Scotland have found that it is a place where they not only get a welcome, but where they can spread fertile roots. We have shown exactly what Scotland can do and what the Scottish people can do. Our complaint is that the people who are working hard—the civil servants, the industrialists, the trade unionists and the local authorities who are searching the world to find new industries—are frustrated by the Government's policies.
Today, we attack not Scotland, but the Government, who the English electorate willed upon us. At the last election, if England had followed Scotland, and, indeed Wales, we should not have had a Tory Government. However, I have a feeling that the people of England have learned their lesson. In fact, all over the country there are Tory posters saying, "Two million new jobs have been provided in Great Britain since the Conservatives took office in 1951". That is, jobs for men, and boys, too. In the whole of Britain there have been 2 million new jobs in that time. What has been the increase in the number of jobs in Scotland? There has been no increase. There has been a reduction of 33,000.
When we look at the opportunities for jobs we remember the Answers yesterday from the Ministry of Labour. In the London area every unemployed man has a choice of three jobs. In Scotland, every unemployed man has to compete with three other people, for there are four unemployed for every job available. What is the position for our young people? We had the figures for the middle of June. There are 28 jobs for every boy unemployed in Birmingham, whereas in Scotland there is not a job for every boy—and that was in the middle of June. I hope that English hon. Members will appreciate that since these figures were issued the position has become worse. Why have we not up-to-date figures? At the end of June another 40,000 young Scottish people left school.
The right hon. Gentleman used to be Minister of Labour. Let him look at some of the pamphlets issued by that Department and by the Scottish Department on technical training, telling us that once again it is as critical as ever it was for young people to get jobs and to get the right kind of jobs. Everybody knows that, and those who know it best are the hon. Members who represent Tory Scotland, the people from the rural areas. They include the hon. Member for Galloway (Mr. Brewis), the hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty (Mr. John MacLeod), the right hon. Member for Argyll (Mr. Noble) and the hon. and gallant Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Commander Donaldson).
Does the hon. and gallant Member say that it is nonsense when I suggest that people have left the Borders? The depopulation of the Borders is one of the most neglected problems in Scotland. Everyone accepts that there is depopulation in the Highlands, but the population of the Borders dropped by 77,000 during the 10 years 1951–61. The only area in Scotland which gained population was Central Scotland. Thus, we had within Scotland a draining of population from the outlying areas. Agriculture has lost 20,000 workers over the last five years. People cannot stay unemployed in the rural areas; they go to the towns, and we have a repetition within Scotland of a pattern which we already see within Great Britain.
We have not just one Scottish problem, but a few Scottish problems. We have had all the analysis necessary in relation to the problem, and we know that what is needed is 40,000 new jobs a year in Scotland. We are losing jobs at the rate of 25,000 a year and we have been losing population at a greater rate in the last two or three years. The average in the last three years has risen to 32,700. To meet the needs of the unemployed and of a decline in industry the least we need is 40,000 jobs a year in Scotland—and that we are not getting.
This is the kernel of our argument—that in terms of the number of jobs provided, where they are provided and the kind of jobs provided, the Government are not meeting the demand. We know that the position is getting worse and that there will be further depopulation. The hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty knows it. For his area, the Local Employment Act in the last four years, faced with this, sort of problem, has provided between 340 and 400 jobs—about 100 new jobs a year; that is all.
What does the right hon. Member intend to do about it? Produce a plan? It is a plan in which there is no industrial content at all, a plan which is a confidence trick, a plan which was to be an election address for the next General Election. We heard about an infrastructure. I remember the hon. Member speaking about it. He said that the Tories would inject into the economy great new public investment, building up the environmental conditions which would attract new industries. He said that compared with 1962–63 we should spend £130 million. When was this said? In December, 1963. For a programme which was supposed to start in 1963–64, in March, they produced a plan in November—and they expect all the revelant comparisons to be made with 1962. In fact, welcome as it is, the increase is only £10 million, concentrated in one area and at the expense of others. It means that any additional benefits coming to parts of Scotland are denied to the rest of Scotland at a time when we need Scotland to be treated as a whole—treated in the way in which the Secretary of State in the debate in 1962 said that it should be treated. The Government are "The Searchers", and we also have 'Cilla. In the same debate, in 1962, the noble Lady the Under-Secretary of State came to the conclusion that Scotland should be judged as a whole. Where is she today, when Scotland is not being judged as a whole? We have one proposal, which is not a plan, and we have no plan for the Highland areas, none for the Borders and none for the rest of Scotland. We have piecemeal planning and that piece is absolute nonsense.
We hear plenty about jobs. We keep hearing about them. I refer to the right hon. Gentleman's tame public relations officer. I do not mean his civil servant; I mean the one who has the ear of the Scottish Office. During the Rutherglen by-election we heard what to my mind was misrepresentation—715 new firms were going to Scotland. Where are they? He went on to tell us that he could reveal the success of the Secretary of State's trip to America. He has become our special agent—" Michael Noble, Special Agent: Have kilt, will travel." Then it was that 57 firms were making inquiries. We started with 715 and we got down to 57. Then we heard that 19 were looking at sites, and eventually we came down to one firm which had made the decision three months earlier.
The right hon. Gentleman has been to Russia. I have a paper about it here. He went to look for jobs. He went to look at an agricultural exhibition. Had he come back from America a day earlier he could have seen the same Soviet Minister of Agriculture in Scotland, being taken around farms in Scotland, as the Under-Secretary knows, because he was there. We do not mind the Secretary of State doing his bit, but let us have less of the gimmicks.
The right hon. Gentleman could have helped the Scottish shipbuilding industry by taking an interest in its efforts to get ships built on the Clyde. We had some words about this today from the Prime Minister. One Scottish shipyard got a ship. There were others which could have got ships, because it was realised that the price was right. How- ever, I understand that these firms received from the Admiralty the instruction that we could not have Soviet ships being built in the same yards as where our naval construction was going on. We could have done with the right hon. Gentleman's interest in respect of the Argentine; we lost an important order because the Board of Trade could not meet the credit needs. We lost it by 10 per cent. We can do with Ministerial help in the right place and at the right time. All we get are glittering gimmicks. They glitter, but do not dazzle.
When the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade spoke of regional development, he laid out three objectives. The first was to bring about a more even spread of economic activity throughout the country and thus make the fullest use of our resources, which should enable us to avoid excessive pressures in areas where demand is already strong and, in particular, where it is strong for land and manpower. He said that if we are able to achieve this, we can secure and maintain a faster rate of expansion.
From the figures of unemployment and job opportunity, is it not evident that this pre-election and induced boom, where so much money has been poured into the economy to sustain the fortunes of the Tory Party, we still have the same picture? Scotland is getting the overspill of that, and we are getting it late. But the demand for labour is just the same. The prosperous areas are even more prosperous, and the shortage is even more acute, but in Scotland, where there is labour, there is still not enough work. The Government have failed, and because they have failed in Scotland and the North-East the boom is already in danger. We have read rumours about inflation in the Press today. It may well be that we are trembling not only on the verge of a General Election but on the verge of a return to the credit squeeze before that.
No one in Scotland believes that the Scottish economy can sustain another attack by the Tory Party. We are in danger of getting back to where we were before. In 1955, the monthly average of unemployment was 51,000. In 1959, it was 94,000. In 1963, it was 103,000. In the right hon. Gentleman takes credit for the decrease this year, I would remind him that, although the figure at present is 71,000, in 1951 it was 43,000. We have become resigned in Scotland to high unemployment figures.
No doubt we shall have the Government taking credit for the fact that the unemployment figure is only 70,000 in the summer time. Yet most of the young people who are working are in temporary jobs, such as waitresses at the seaside. When the winter comes they will be unemployed. Can the right hon. Gentleman give me an estimate of how successful his policies have been in the past three years in making any impression on the hard core of 80,000 to 90,000 unemployed that we have to endure in Scotland every year?
When we bear in mind the needs of the country, what the right hon. Gentleman said is right, that unless he solves this problem we shall not get expansion without inflation and we shall have the continued recurrence of the stop-go which has played havoc with the Scottish economy and the United Kingdom economy. The right hon. Gentleman hopes to get his new infrastructure mounted, and there is to be a considerable increase in the building of roads. We hope that the same will apply to schools and hospitals, but they were not mentioned. I should have thought that they and housing were part of the intra-structure.
In his first speech as Secretary of State, the right hon. Gentleman expressed himself as anything but satisfied with the construction industry in Scotland. Since then we have had a report on that industry to the Ministry of Public Building and Works which tells us that the Scottish Building industry is not geared to meet the demands upon it. The reason is that it has never had continuity. Because of the stop-go policy it could not organise itself. What has the right hon. Gentleman done to ensure that the industry will not be held up for lack of materials which have to come from the South, because there we have the same picture?
What confuses Scottish people is how the Government can imagine that we can take seriously their promises about Central Scotland and the rest of Scotland later, when we are presented with a document like the South-East Study, which indicates that, through natural forces, there will be an increase of population of 3½ million in London and the South-East, and that the Government are to embark on an expenditure of not £130 million a year, but £1,500 million purely on environmental services. Does not this make nonsense of what the right hon. Gentleman said about regional development—that we shall seek to get a balance of regional development—when the Government are already accepting such plans as that, plans which will start to be geared while the Scottish ones are being thought of? It makes nonsense of the whole thing. We have there, as in the Midlands, an even more attractive magnet which will draw away from the Highlands and the rural areas of central Scotland population that we cannot afford to lose at the present rate without endangering the possibility of ever having a thriving economy.
The right hon. Gentleman said one true word about the Central Scottish plan, that we could not continue to lose young people at the rate at which we are losing them. The population loss of Inverness has been high. The Registrar-General has analysed it for us, and we find that one out of four of the young men between 18 and 40 have left. There is only one bright spot in the Highland area, and that is Caithness and Sutherland, and the reason for that is Dounreay, which is a public enterprise and a part of the "junk yard".
I ask the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade to give his attention to this matter. We are very concerned about the future of Dounreay. This is the hope for the Highlands, where we have seen a growth of population and new industry quite apart from the experimental station. What is now to happen? Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman will answer a straight question. If the new fast reactor is not sited there, would it be fair to say that Dounreay will fade out and that Caithness and Sutherland will enter into an era not of hope, but of twilight?
It may well be that the experimental station was put in the area because of the geographical location, but the fact is that it did go and the scientists followed. There is not a place in Britain where one could not put such a station, because people will go where their work is. The Secretary of State for Scotland is refurbishing his local employment policy. He did it in 1960 and again in 1963. That policy would have been adequate to the aims of the Government in 1950, purely to provide a little diversification. The Government, however, missed an opportunity in 1953 when Professor Cairncross suggested growth points not only in one area, but all round Scotland.
If we are to embark on the kind of programme that I am sure the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade would like to see, we must have proper use of our resources of land and men. But the Government's policies are quite inadequate to the fundamental need. Every planning expert has told us that the task is dispersal of population and relocation of industry. Unless we meet these two requirements, we shall not be able to solve the vast problems of the monstrosities that stump across London every day.
I sometimes think that the Government could have done more in relation to employment and industrial policies if they had done nothing about London traffic. Sooner or later they will be forced to adopt a realistic policy for the dispersal of industry. They will have to use the country as a whole. We are not a large country and the possibilities, given good transport, are quite limitless.
That, however, will require a sensible transport policy. Is it not time that we shut Dr. Beeching's case book? Is it not time that we had a realistic policy in relation to transport by land and by air? Glasgow is only one hour by air from London. Indeed, one can get there more easily than one can get to the terminus of the No. 11 bus in London.
We must break the stranglehold that London has on the minds of British businessmen. The Government could do a lot more than they have done. Admittedly, they have made a start with the Post Office Savings Bank. I did not think that they would have the courage and even so they managed to do it the wrong way. Nevertheless, we thank them for the result. But we want them to do more.
Cannot the Government interest themselves in getting a good policy to link up our main centres of population by air? Dundee has been crying out for direct air services to the capital for long enough but has not got them. The possibilities of shortening our distances are there but the Government simply do not take them. We feel that even Prestwick is being used as part of the game of the economics of B.O.A.C. Certainly, the resources of Scotland are not being used and I appeal to the Government to see that they are.
There are certain things that the Government simply must do. They must stop drifting and start governing. They must plan for the fullest use of our resources of men and land all over the country. My right hon. Friend the Member for Belper (Mr. G. Brown) last night gave an excellent exposition of what that planning means. Both national and regional planning are needed.
I see that the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade smiles. Does not he realise the readiness of Scottish industrialists and trade unionists to co-operate with the Government if the Government will only give them a new lead? But they do not co-operate with the Government because they cannot. The Government's dogma does not allow them to accept that a Government should govern because government means interference with other interests. We have seen that in the Highlands. We see the modern clan warfare of the Clan Vesteys, the Clan Burtons and the Clan Whitbreads.
Sooner or later we must have regional planning and the relocation of industry. We must have a proper system to make that relocation possible. We must relocate to growth areas research and experimental units. I can guess what the Secretary of State for Scotland will say about planning. It is a rehabilitated word. He used it in an article in the Scotsman, last December. He said that for the first time we had a chance to plan. What have the Government been doing for 13 years that they did not have the opportunity before? The fact is that circumstances are forcing them into certain action but their dogma will not allow them to take it.
The Scottish Council says that we must have a national pattern of industry. It says that the plan for Central Scotland will collapse because it lacks the fundamental element of national industrial planning. The Council says that what we need more than anything else is an opportunity to have the growth points of industry within the growth points of Scotland and that the growth points of industry are research and experiment.
I appeal even at this late stage to the Government to do something. We have a wonderful opportunity in Scotland, but we must ensure that we have a construction industry which is geared to the needs and properly equipped and capitalised. It can only get this with the prospect of continuing work. Within the regions, let us use the resources of the local authorities, of the trade unionists, of the people, all of whom are anxious to help but are frustrated by the Government.
In their view of the interests of the nation as a whole, not just of Scotland alone, the Government have shown themselves more responsible to pressures of privilege than to patriotism. Do not let them say a word about patriotism. It was not from the backstreets of Glasgow that a letter went from Hong Kong saying, "It may be anti-British, but it makes sense to me. Sell".
We have no desire to see Scotland becoming merely a training ground for building up skills for industry in the South and elsewhere and our Highlands and the Borders becoming merely the retreat of the privileged from the horrors they have allowed to happen in the South. If the Government are to accept responsibility for the well-being of the nation, both social and industrial, it is essential that they should have a plan and take powers to see it implemented. They would get the response and cooperation of Scottish industry, the Scottish T.U.C. and the Scottish people. But it is too late for the Government now to turn their backs on all the things they believe in and they will find in the coming months that they will be rejected by the Scottish people, unwept, unhonoured and unsung.
I regard this debate as being of the utmost importance. I agree with the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross) that it is not selfish for Scotland to have a day's debate of this kind or to emphasise Scotland's needs, as the hon. Gentleman did. I profoundly agree because of the important part which Scotland has in the national life and because of the reasons which the hon. Gentleman quoted from one of my own speeches when I was dealing with the objects of regional development.
The hon. Member said that the Scots were a proud nation, and I hope that that will always be so. The last thing in my mind is that I should respond to his invitation to deliver a sermon. We all recognise that one of the great characteristics of the Scottish nation is its pride, and that this will stand it in good stead in the developments which are now coming about.
The hon. Gentleman asked about the annual report on the Local Employment Acts. It was not published on 30th July, last year, as the hon. Gentleman suggested. It was ordered to be printed on 30th July and was published on 19th September. It is customary for this Report to be published at about that time, and in the normal way it will be submitted to me for approval before the end of the month and will again be printed at about the customary time. There is no difference of approach to the Report.
The hon. Gentleman went on to say that he found that officials, industrialists, local authorities and many others were all working hard in the cause of meeting the problems of Scotland, but were being frustrated by the Government. Frankly, that is not what I have found in the four official visits which I have made to Scotland since taking up my present office, with responsibility for Board of Trade matters in Scotland and responsibility also for regional development, indeed, I have found that they are all co-operating fully with the Government in the plans which we have put forward and are certainly not feeling any sense of frustration because of Government policy in the work which they want to do.
The hon. Gentleman mentioned the first objective which I described for regional development—more widespread industry. Of course, this is our purpose. He said that the job opportunities in the Midlands and South demonstrated that this policy was already a failure. I cannot agree. What the job opportunities in the Midlands and South show is that the present industrial capacity of firms here is such that they are able to employ this additional amount of labour, or certainly a figure approaching it—there is a duplication in employment figures so the total may not be the same. Our task, as I shall elaborate later, is to induce fresh expansion in Scotland as well as in the other development districts. I want to give the figures to show what has already been done there and what is being done in the context of the problem with which we are faced.
The hon. Gentleman mentioned the South-East Study and what it involves. I will have something more to say later about the South-East Study, because its relevance to Scottish development is of the utmost importance. The hon. Gentleman went on to say that the programme put forward by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland in the White Paper had no industrial content, and he implied that the investment was inadequate.
What are the growth zones other than an industrial content? The whole concept put forward in the Toothill Report, of concentration in the growth zones, is an industrial concept, which is different from, or a development of, the concepts lying behind the Local Employment Acts up to 1963. This is the industrial content. The White Paper said that we should concentrate on the growth zones and provide the necessary infrastructure for them and by this means induce industry to go into places where it was most likely to want to go and develop. That is the industrial concept of the White Paper.
The hon. Gentleman mentioned the investment figures for 1963 and the increase in 1964. All this is in the context that 7½ per cent. of the population is getting 11 per cent. of the country's public service investment. What the hon. Gentleman and his colleagues, and the Government, have to face, is whether, in the context of the country as a whole, the central zone of Scotland, with 7½ per cent. of the population, should have even more than 11 per cent. of the total public service investment.
If the hon. Gentleman is arguing that, he immediately brings into the argument the position of the North-East, the North-West, the South-West and other areas which, because of high unemployment problems in particular areas—I agree, not as great as Central Scotland—are also asking for priority of investment. The Government have decided that Central Scotland and the North-East should have priority of public service investment and that, with 13 per cent. of the population between them, they should have 18 per cent. of the public service investment. This is giving them a definite and considerable priority.
The question which has to be faced is whether Central Scotland should have a larger proportion of this public service investment, or whether the total public service investment should be increased. The hon. Member for Cardiff, South-East (Mr. Callaghan) has already said in public and in the House of Commons that the Government's undertakings in investment are the maximum which the country ought to be asked to undertake. I must, therefore, ask the hon. Gentleman, when he argues in this way, to face the question whether other parts of the country are to have still less public service investment, or whether the total is to be expanded still further to give Central Scotland a larger amount.
Is it not a fact that the greater part of the public service investment in the North-East and in Scotland is in housing provided by local housing authorities, whereas in the prosperous South and the Midlands a greater part of the housing is met by private enterprise for people who are able to become owner-occupiers? In the circumstances, is it not monstrous of the right hon. Gentleman to compare investment in housing by local authorities in Scotland and in the North-East with housing investment in London, the North-East and the Midlands, completely leaving out of account the investment in housing made by private enterprise in prosperous areas?
It would have a more beneficial effect if the hon. Gentleman avoided the use of words like "monstrous". We are endeavouring, I hope, to reach a solution to Scotland's problem. I was comparing public service investment in Scotland and the North-East with that in the rest of the country. I was not comparing it with private investment; nor was I comparing private investment in the South with private investment in the North.
Is the hon. Gentleman arguing that because there is private investment in the South—he would say to a greater degree than in the North—the North ought to have a still greater proportion of public service investment? That is the only logical conclusion from his argument that there is more private investment in the South than in the North. What I am arguing is that the Government have already given considerable priority to Central Scotland and the North-East.
Public service investment consists also of the assistance which the Government give to local authorities. Therefore, the local authorities are also benefiting from the point of view of housing, roads, schools and communications. All this is contained in public service investment. What I am saying is that these two areas are getting this priority and I do not think that we can ask the rest of the country to take a still lower priority from the point of view of public service investment.
With great respect to the hon. and learned Gentleman, I am talking about the north-east of England.
The other point I should like to deal with is this. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock really tried to discredit what is being done by saying that he did not want to hear about it. He said, "Of course, we shall hear about jobs provided, new factories and jobs in the pipeline." I regard this as of the utmost importance and therefore propose to tell the hon. Gentleman. Let him not try to discredit it by saying, "We shall hear the old stories over again." I hope to give him the up-to-date figures of what is being done. The final point is that the hon. Gentleman had no concrete suggestions of any kind to make as to how this problem should be handled.
I am entitled to ask the hon. Gentleman that, if he is criticising what has already been done, then he should at least have some suggestions to make as to how more can be done and made more acceptable The hon. Gentleman said, first, that he wanted us to start governing. That is not relevant today. Secondly, he wanted a plan for the whole country. Thirdly, he wanted regional planning and a relocation of industry. Fourthly, he wanted redevelopment units.
What does this mean in practice? That is really the point with which we are faced. The hon. Gentleman used phrases like "a national plan" and "a regional plan ", but what do they mean from the point of view of industry which is going to provide employment in Scotland? I again ask the hon. Gentleman and his Friends to face this question. Does he mean that within the context of his national plan or regional plan industry is to have higher inducements to go to Scotland? If so, what are they to be? I find no criticism of the inducements offered to industry. Indeed, we know that they are as good as any offered anywhere in the Western world. It is no use the hon. Gentleman saying that it does not produce results. He must suggest what more would induce industry to go there. Are the inducements to be different, or is the hon. Gentleman suggesting that we should expand the whole economy further in order to get industry to Scotland? Or is he suggesting, when he talks about a location of industry plan, that industry is to be directed to Scotland?
On every other occasion that I have put this question to them the hon. Gentleman and his hon. Friends have shied away from it and have said, "Of course, we are not going to direct industry in this country." Is that still their position or is it not? If the hon. Gentleman is not going to produce any inducements or is going to change them, is he going to direct industry or is he not? Hitherto he has always said" No ".
When the hon. Gentleman says that there is to be a location of industry plan, what does this mean? Does it mean that particular types of industry can go only to particular places, in which case what is he going to say when I advise a firm not to go to Scotland because I do not think it would be suitable? Of course, the hon. Gentleman would be the first to complain if I were to do that, and rightly so. Therefore, when we come down to the practical question of what is meant by national plan, a regional plan or location of industry there is no concrete proposal from him and his hon. Friends. What we have done is to concentrate the inducements and the infrastructure on zones of growth where we think industry is most likely to go. This is the best policy for any Government to follow. If the hon. Gentleman has other proposals to make, then let him say what they are. Hitherto they have never been produced.
If the hon. Gentleman says that he did not go so far as to say that he believed in setting up publicly-owned firms in manufacturing industry, what he did imply was that the Atomic Energy Authority was a model for this and that therefore there ought to be publicly-owned industries to manufacture in Scotland. If that is his proposal, let him say so clearly and say also which of these industries are now going to be publicly owned, which are the things that can be made profitable by public enterprise in Scotland or what he is going to set up and subsidise as manufacturing industry in Scotland. When the hon. Gentleman does that we shall believe that there is some practical content in all these splendid phrases such as "a national plan", "a regional plan" and "location of industry".
I want to deal with the problems which face Scotland, and I hope that I shall deal with them realistically because I believe that it is in the context of these problems that one must judge what is being done and what further can be done. The hon. Gentleman mentioned two great problems—the problem of increasing population and, without being specific, the problem of structural change. Both of these, I believe, are great problems. In the decade 1951 to 1961 the natural increase in Scotland was 340,000. The hon. Gentleman took a far longer range. It was 6·7 per cent. of the population compared with the United Kingdom average of 5 per cent. Of course, it is quite right that, because of the problem of this above average increase in population and the structural change, the total population increased by a much smaller amount. Actually it was 91,000.
In the White Paper proposals the Government's aim is to reduce this figure of migration, and to reduce it very considerably. The problem of the structural change is, I think, illustrated by the following figures. We have seen agriculture, coal mining and ship building as the industries mainly responsible for the decline in male employment. If we take the four years 1959–63, we find that employment in coal mining fell by 26,800, in shipbuilding by 12,300 and in agriculture by 7,800—in agriculture because of increasing efficiency and mechanisation and not because it was a declining industry. This was a total of 46,900—nearly 47,000—in four years; 47,000 jobs lost because of structural change.
This combined with the increase in population are the two great problems with which we are faced in Scotland today.
The Ministry of Labour employment figures for 1964 are not yet available, but, of course, the coal mining employment is continuing to decline for understandable reasons. We have seen the incidence of this following mainly on the closures in Cowdenbeath and Kilsyth, but with regard to the decline in shipbuilding employment, although it continued in 1963, the position since April has been rather better. Relatively few men have been discharged from shipbuilding, and the orders which were won in 1963 and 1964 will provide stable employment for some time to come in the yards concerned. In addition employment in the dockyard at Rosyth will be increased by about 700 over the next four years. Even more recently—indeed as we heard announced at the end of last week—Scotts Shipbuilding and Engineering Company of Greenock has won a contract for a further two Oberon Class submarines for the Royal Australian Navy. These are in addition to the contract for the first two submarines of that kind. The firm is to be warmly congratulated on securing these contracts.
I shall always encourage trade between the Soviet Union and ourselves, as I did during the visit of the trade delegation led by Mr. Patolichev. When we were visiting Scotland he told me that wherever tenders were competitive he would be prepared to consider the purchase by the Soviet Union of ships built in this country.
It is against that background of the structural change that I want to look at the assistance which has been given to Scotland, and the results of it. Up to 30th June of this year, three weeks ago, assistance to Scotland amounted to £58·7 million in the three years of the Local Employment Acts, 1960 and 1963. As questions have been asked about the total amount given to Scotland, I repeat that the figure is £58·7 million. It covered 521 projects, estimated to provide 56,000 new jobs.
I can give the figures of I.D.C.s for the year ending 31st March, 1964. These were issued for 177 projects in Scotland, with an area of 5½ million sq. ft., estimated to provide additional employment of more than 14,000. This compares with 1963, in which there were 146 schemes for 3·8 million sq. ft., estimated to provide more than 9,000 jobs.
Those figures show the continuing increase over this period of applications for industrial development certificates for a very large area of factory space, but I should also like to give the Committee the figures of applications for standard grants for building and machinery under the 1963 Act. As at 3rd July, there were 3,312 applications altogether. Of these, 2,431 have been dealt with, and firm offers have been made for 841. That is for the country as a whole. The figure which interests hon. Gentlemen opposite is that 48 per cent. of these applications were for Scotland, 28 for north-east England, 17 per cent. for north-west England, 3½ per cent. for Wales, and 3½ per cent. for the rest of England. They show that of the large number of applications for standard grants, nearly half were for Scotland, and they are still coming in at the rate of about 80 a week.
The hon. Member says that they do not necessarily produce jobs. They are not eligible for grant unless they produce employment. The purpose of the grant is to produce employment.
Can the right hon. Gentleman break down the figure? There are Section 1 grants for plant and machinery which are available for the first time to existing industries as well as to new ones. There are also the Section 3 grants of 25 per cent. for buildings. Can the right hon. Gentleman break down that figure?
I can give the figures for the country as a whole. There were 1,536 for buildings, and 1,776 for plant and machinery.
I want to emphasise how much has been done about advance factories, and the position as it is today. Since 1959, 23 advance factories have been approved for Scotland, 12 have been built, of which 9 have been allocated, and 3 are nearly complete. At the moment we are considering applications for the factories at Port Glasgow, at Stranraer, and Sanquhar.
The advance factory at Stranraer was taken over in May by Baby Dear Shoes, Ltd. It expects to provide about 300 jobs, mainly for women, but it has now applied for the factory to be extended from the present size of about 11,000 sq. ft., to 42,000 sq. ft., and we are carrying on discussion with the company about this expansion. This will be a valuable addition to the industry in Stranraer.
The factories at Newhouse, Vale of Leven, and Kilwinning, will be available shortly. At Peterhead the advance factory will take the form of re-acquiring an existing building from Euclid (Great Britain) Ltd., and we shall start construction of factories at Fraserburgh and The Calders. There has been difficulty in finding sites, but we shall soon begin construction on the factories which I announced on 30th April, at Kirkcaldy, Dundee, Donibristle, which I visited, Queenslie and the Vale of Leven. That is a considerable programme of advance factory building in which Scotland has had the larger share, and I believe rightly so.
As regards new industrial estates, the one at Donibristle, which was established in 1962, is now going well. There are four tenants there. An advance factory is to be built, and as the estate is within site of the Forth Bridge. I believe that it should benefit greatly from the opening of the new road route.
The estate at Bellshill, which covers more than 100 acres, is being developed. I can tell the Committee that we encountered certain planning difficulties there, but the planning authority is now satisfied with the proposals made by the Industrial Estates Management Corporation for Scotland and work on the estate's roads and sewers is going ahead.
Recently, I went to the Newhouse Industrial Estate which is a good example of the success of industrial estates as growth centres, but there is still room for expansion there. I have been greatly impressed with the development of Honeywell Controls Ltd. and Euclids which now occupy seven to eight times the amount of space they occupied 10 years ago. There are now 21 Board of Trade industrial estates in Scotland, with 348 tenants occupying 20 million sq. ft. of factory space in development districts. This is an indication of the amount which has been provided by the Governments of both parties for the development of industry in Scotland.
Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us whether he has reached a decision on his consideration of a further industrial estate for that part of Lanarkshire which has been so badly hit by the closure of both iron works and pits?
The right hon. Gentleman said that the coal mining industry in Cowdenbeath and Kilsyth had more or less gone out of being. In the course of his remarks he rightly told the Committee what he was proposing to do in Cowdenbeath and in other areas, but he made a grave omission. He did not tell us what he was proposing to do in Kilsyth and other parts of Stirlingshire such as Plean, Bannockburn, Cowie and Fallin where the pits have been closed.
I had the opportunity of visiting certain sites with the hon. Lady and the hon. Member for Lanark (Mrs. Hart) who is not in the Committee at the moment. I am giving careful consideration to the problems which she raised with me in respect of the sites I saw there. I shall be writing to her shortly. The hon. Member for West Stirlingshire (Mr. W. Baxter) made representations yesterday about the problems of his constituency. I have not yet reached a decision as a result of our talk, but I will give careful consideration to what he told me.
What do the figures which I have been giving to the Committee mean in terms of jobs in prospect? There are now 40,000 jobs in the pipeline, 38,000 of which are in the development districts. These do not include the several thousand jobs which will arise from the transfer of the Post Office Savings Bank to Glasgow or from the various other projects of which we know. There are four principal projects which are contributing to this total—the Cameron Ironworks at Livingston; Chemstrand, at Irvine; Robert McLaren & Co., in Glasgow and Philips Electrical Co. Ltd. in Hamilton and Dunfermline. Many companies with jobs to mature are immigrant companies. Altogether 37 companies came to Scotland from outside in 1963. Already, in 1964, 21 companies have decided to set up in Scotland from outside.
The hon. Member has raised a question which is always put about jobs in the pipeline. The general tendency is to underestimate what is being done, because of a lack of realisation of the loss of jobs which I have already mentioned as a result of structural change. Sometimes hon. Members indicate that in their opinion these assessments are too optimistic. But they are the assessments made by individual firms when they apply to us for grants under the Local Employment Act. We have been looking at what has been happening in the past. Taking the figures between 1945 and 1963, of 123 immigrant or new companies which occupied factories in Scotland during those years, 54 further extended their premises after they had arrived. The additional employment estimated was 48,000 and, with the extensions which I have mentioned, about 78,000. This included 31,000 from factory extensions in the period 1960–63—a very large proportion in those four years.
The latest figures I have, which are for February, 1964, show that the actual employment in the 123 companies was about 61,000. We have no doubt that the estimate of 78,000 will be reached when these companies have finished the extensions which I mentioned earlier, which they have undertaken since arriving in their factories. The figures that I have given for the 123 new companies coming into Scotland show that the actual forecasts have been reached and exceeded, and that there is a good prospect of reaching the extended figures which they have given us as a result of their proposals for extension.
There are many companies in respect of which I could give examples of particular expansions which have gone far beyond the original estimates. For instance, Honeywell Controls, Caterpillar Tractors, National Cash Register and Burroughs are good examples of firms which have exceeded their original estimates. I hope that the hon. Member will realise that in giving figures for future employment we are taking the estimates on which we base the inducements allowed to firms, and the checks that we have made of the companies which have moved into Scotland show that these figures have not only been reached but exceeded owing to later extensions.
The right hon. Gentleman will recall that when the Estimates Committee reported on the working of the Local Employment Act it made representation that the Board of Trade should produce, every three months, figures of jobs actually provided, as distinct from jobs in the pipeline, and that the Board of Trade accepted that recommendation, with reservations. The figures have never yet been produced. Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us when they will be produced every quarter, as we suggested?
The hon. Member will recall that we explained to the Committee the difficulty of trying to elate the number of I.D.C.s granted to particular figures of employment in a period of three months, and that this was impossible as a co-relation between I.D.C.s and particular employment in a period of three months, quite apart from the other economic factors which affected that figure.
I have tried to take the full period of 1945 to 1963 in respect of specific companies that we have been able to check in order to see what has been happening in relation to their original estimates of employment. We have compared their estimates to the position in which they are today. This gives a broad indication, which is more informative and reliable than any attempt to take a three months' period and relate it to specific I.D.C.s, because I.D.C.s take so long to bring into practice, owing to the time of building, and so on.
I want to make three points about growth. The first concerns motor vehicles and motor components. At mid-1963 the number of people employed in the motor vehicle industry in Scotland was 17,300, an increase of 8,400 on the previous year. At May, 1964—and these are the latest figures that I have—about 16,500 people were employed in four firms—B.M.C., Rootes, Pressed Steel and Albion Motors. This means that the total number of people concerned with the motor industry now is just on 20,000.
The question of component manufacturers was raised at Question Time last week. In 1960, just over 12 firms employed about 10,000 people, who could be identified as producing something for the motor industry although it was not the main purpose of the firms. After the B.M.C. and Rootes proposals, 22 firms connected with the motor industry decided to establish units in Scotland. They are small units, employing altogether not much more than 1,500 or 2,000 people. The great desire for a major component industry in Scotland to supply the motor industry has not yet been realised, but a number of small firms have set up in Scotland as a result of the motor industry's coming there.
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the opinion of the management of B.M.C. in my constituency is that if a further major unit came to Scotland there would be a flood of ancillary industries, creating something of the order of a critical point? In the light of this information will the right hon. Gentleman do everything possible to encourage a third firm to come to Scotland?
That view has been put to me, and I fully realise the importance of it.
The second growth point arises in the case of the service industries in Scotland. Between 1959 and 1963 employment in these industries rose by just over 70,900 and in the construction industries by 25,600. There have been considerable increases in the distributive trades, professional and scientific services, and other forms of service employment.
The third growth point is in the engineering and electrical goods manufacturing industries, which expanded in these four years by 15,400. This includes an expansion of 4,800 on the part of companies making electronic apparatus. These show the growth points in contrast to the areas of structural change which I discussed earlier.
What has been achieved has been achieved as a voluntary movement of firms, and this depends on the inducements.
The motor industry feels that investment in Scotland at present is not sufficient to justify a number of ancillary manufacturers coming into Central Scotland, but they feel that if there were a third major manufacturer its capacity would justify ancillary firms setting up. This confirms the view held throughout a considerable part of the motor industry, and it is of great importance.
The right hon. Gentleman has been telling us about the numerous jobs which have gone into Scotland over this period. Is he aware that the census return for 1951–61 shows that there has been a drain from the Highland counties, including Perthshire of, I estimate, over 40,000 people in the 10 years? The population is draining away steadily each year. This is continuing today at the same rate, or even at a greater rate. Is the right hon. Gentleman doing anything in his location of work and job opportunities to arrest this drain, which will be a calamity in the future years for Scotland?
My thesis has been that we are working against the forces of the structural change which has caused a loss of 50,000 jobs in the last five years. Nobody can say that the change ought not to have taken place. Indeed, it was bound to take place. I have been talking about the jobs which are being provided in an inducement to people to go to Scotland. Dealing with the point which the hon. Member made, the pulp mills are making a contribution. We are concentrating on the growth zones in Scotland which we believe most likely to attract industry, and we are carrying out studies of the Highlands and on the Borders for further action.
I have made a number of visits to Scotland, and I want to make some comment on some aspects of those visits. In particular I wish to comment on the impression made upon me when I toured parts of Fife on 1st June. I was impressed by the progress which they have made in tackling the problem of the rehabilitation of the area, in clearing derelict land and in restoring it. This is based on a sound plan into which they are putting very great energy, and I pay tribute wholeheartedly to what they are doing, because it is of immense value to industry which is thinking of going to Scotland to find that these problems are being dealt with. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State is as keen as I am that progress should be made on this in other parts of Scotland, too.
There have been discussions with the planning authorities concerned in respect of the Grangemouth and Falkirk area about the future arrangements for the growth zone, and I had a useful discussion with industrialists at Newhouse about dealing with the problems of going to Scotland. They emphasised that it is not only a question of inducement or indeed of plans from the industrial point of view, nor is it only a question of the calculations of the Minister of Transport about communications from one market to another. A very important factor in the minds of industrialists is that of the provision of housing, the provision of schools for their children and the provision of means of communication from the point of view of executives communicating with other parts of the country. These are all factors of the greatest importance, and that is why my right hon. Friend, in his programme, and the White Paper have taken the problem as a whole and why the rest of the public investment is so important when we are doing our utmost to persuade industry to go to Scotland. The hon. Member mentioned aviation. There was yesterday a meeting of the Scottish Council with the Minister of Aviation in which they discussed the points which the hon. Member mentioned.
I believe that as a result of the basis of the White Paper and the action which has been taken under it, and the efforts which are being made to induce industry to go to Scotland, the general approach in Scotland today is more optimistic and there is a greater spirit of confidence in the future. I have found that on my visits to Scotland, and I have found it to be growing over the past year. I believe—and the industrialists tell me this—that Scotland is on the move industrially and that they recognise that they are not looking to the past, where the historic industries were declining, but to the future, where the new growth industries are developing. I believe that this is a most important psychological attitude of mind and that it was for this reason that the Government's policy secured general support.
One of the other important aspects arising in these three years—and the hon. Member did not continue the point—was that of the appreciation of the general environment into which industrialists are being asked to go. There is a recognition that it is a different way of life, in many ways perhaps a much happier way of life, than that of the congested industrial areas of the South and of England and Wales generally. There is a recognition that beautiful country is easily to hand and also a recognition of the importance of Scotland.
It was for this reason that I was particularly glad that we were able to have the Ministerial meeting of the European Free Trade Association in Edinburgh a fortnight ago. As we were in the Chair, it fell to us to offer this arrangement to the Council. The Council accepted at once and with alacrity. They were given a tremendous welcome in Edinburgh and immense hospitality. Every one of them commented on what an enjoyable as well as a fruitful conference it had been. It was the first time within living memory that an international Ministerial Meeting had been held in Edinburgh. There had been doubts whether it was a suitable centre or whether there was accommodation in Edinburgh for the conference. Edinburgh University made its building available to us for the conference—the new David Hume Tower—and this provided a first-class and ideal centre for the Ministerial Meetings. They were able to transact their business very efficiently, as well as very pleasantly. I hope that this was not an isolated occasion but only the first of many conferences and meetings which will be held in Edinburgh. It demonstrates our desire that these meetings should not be concentrated in London and the South but should be held in the other great cities of the country.
The hon. Member said that we should never achieve results, particularly in the construction industries, unless there were an assurance about the future. On 3rd December last I gave a very firm assurance about the Government's intentions in public investment. I said,
…even if it were necessary to moderate the growth of public service investment in the country as a whole, exceptions would be made for these growth areas where the programme will be maintained so long as the necessary resources are available."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 3rd December, 1963; Vol. 685, c. 992.]
The hon. Member will see that I gave that firm assurance on behalf of the Government and that therefore these industries
in Scotland can see that they have that assurance about future investment firmly on the record. I put it again on the record in order to meet the specific point which the hon. Member mentioned that in order to have increasing productivity and more efficiency, and to produce the answer from the construction point of view, they must have an assurance of continuity.
I was asked about research and development work. Earlier this year the Scottish Council issued a Report urging that this should be spread more widely through the country. On 5th May my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister told the House that the Council's recommendations are being examined and that this examination is proceeding as fast as possible in relation not only to Scotland but to the other regions. I firmly believe that we must obtain a wider distribution of the location of research and development work over other parts of the country, and particularly in Scotland. I have said this in Scotland on my visits there, and I say it again to the House. Let us not under-estimate the difficulties of doing this. As I remarked when visiting Durham the other day, the boffins seem to be a rather shy group and have homing instincts by nature. This is our experience with many of them.
I agree about Dounreay, but I am speaking about the generality. I appeal to them to look at the wider interests of the country as a whole when they are considering this question, as many of them are bound to do, because I am sure that it is in the national interest that we should have this wider distribution.
I want to mention one sphere in which those in Scottish industry have been making very great effort in respect of their own firms. This was the visit of the Scottish chambers of commerce to Canada in May. I met the Edinburgh Chamber before it went and again after it returned. This was obviously a very worthwhile event. In June, the Scottish Council sent a mission to Benelux. I believe that all these things are a great help. What ought to be of most benefit, perhaps, is the Scottish Industries Exhibition in Glasgow on 3rd September. This, I believe, can do much to help Scottish production and demonstrate an immense range of products, both for consumer goods and for capital markets. Again, I was very glad when, after our talk in February, the Canadian Minister of Commerce agreed that the Canadian Government could remove the tax discrimination against one of Scotland's major products, which is, of course, whisky. This will, I believe, again be helpful to Scotland.
I have described what is being done immediately, and the Committee is aware of the White Paper provisions for the long term. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock mentioned the South-East Study. I must ask the hon. Gentleman to face the facts. The facts of the South-East are that there will be a 2½ million increase by natural growth in the South-East itself. There is no doubt that provision must be made for that. The hon. Gentleman said that there should be a location of industry policy in a regional plan, whatever he may mean by that. Does he suggest that this natural growth should be moved out of the South-East? Of course not; he is not suggesting that for a moment.
That includes over | million retired people who will not want jobs, but who will come to the South to retire. Does the hon. Gentleman say that they must be given inducements to go elsewhere? I do not believe that that is a practical policy. It may be that the movement of population will change over the next 20 years. If so, so much the better. People may retire to other parts of the country. The best projection we can obtain is that well over ¼ million will retire to the South from other parts of the country.
The next projection is that well over ¼ million will be immigrants from overseas—from Commonwealth and foreign countries. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock and his hon. Friends have always urged that this should be allowed. Indeed, many hon. Members opposite objected when controls were introduced for the Commonwealth. Is the hon. Gentleman saying that these people must be allowed in, but must not be allowed to stay anywhere south of a line drawn, let us say, from Birmingham to the Wash, or whatever you like? Of course not. This means that there will be over 3 million additional population coming to the South.
The last part is immigration from the rest of the country. This means just over ¼ million from the whole country over 20 years. This, spread over 20 years, allows for success in the North-East and in Scotland. We are being criticised by some who say that we have not made sufficient allowance for migration, because of the natural migration which always goes on between regions. Figures for that are available. Migration between prosperous regions is going on all the time.
I am sorry, but the right hon. Gentleman has got it quite wrong, because we have not allowed for immigration on anything like the same scale from Scotland or from the North-East into the South. The right hon. Gentleman is wrong in saying that we are allowing even more immigration. The immigration is of retired people. If he includes them in his figure, it may be so. It includes the immigration of retired people and of people from the Commonwealth and foreign countries.
I meant exactly what I said. It is correct. I gave the figures in the previous debate. The total immigration of all kinds into the South-East over the next 20 years will be greater per year than the total of immigration over the last ten years. How can the Secretary of State justify that?
Is the right hon. Gentleman saying that we must stop retired people coming in or that we must stop Commonwealth or foreign people coming in? If he is taking the total figure for immigration, it includes both these groups. I say that we cannot keep out retired people, nor can we say that Commonwealth and foreign people coming in can settle in only one part of the country. That is the fact to which the right hon. Gentleman must address himself.
Because we have an increasing and ageing population, in which naturally the numbers retiring are bound to be greater as well. The right hon. Gentleman cannot take the simple figures and say that it is indefensible. The figure for the immigration of working population is smaller. We are being criticised for not allowing a sufficient figure for this. If there is to be this increase—nobody suggests that it should be moved anywhere else—provision must be made for it.
I want to emphasise again that there are five safeguards for Scotland, as well as for the North-East, in this arrangement. First, it will be in the 1970s before the capital investment is required for industry. Therefore, this gives this run for the rest of the decade to Scotland. Secondly, the I.D.C. policy remains the same. I have made it absolutely plain to all industrialists that they need not think that the I.D.C. policy will be weakened, as long as we are responsible for it, because of the expansion in the South-East. Thirdly, in employment a very large amount—I have given the figure for services in Scotland—is bound to be provided by services which are inherent in any situation where there is a corresponding population. Therefore, the amount of manufacturing industry required for these people will not be so large as many at first thought.
Fourthly, we have given an assurance that inducements for growth zones will remain until the whole area has seen its unemployment fall and is experiencing substantial prosperity. The undertaking is set out in the White Papers. Fifthly, we have given the assurance that the priority of capital investment to population which I discussed at the beginning of my remarks will also remain. The South-East will not get priority for public service investment.
With these five assurances I believe that we have done our utmost to ensure that Scotland and the North-East are provided with every opportunity to get the industry which they require. Therefore, I believe that we should do our utmost to continue to encourage industry to go to Scotland, that we should also encourage the internal expansion in Scotland which is so desirable, and that with the immediate action which we are taking, and the long-term proposals set out in the White Paper, we can, admittedly with an immense amount of effort, overcome the problems of Scotland.
The Secretary of State referred to the development of industrial estates in Scotland. Why did his Department refuse the offer made by Glasgow Corporation to give it the 90 acres of ground contiguous to Queenslie Industrial Estate, in Glasgow? Would it not have been better for the Department to have accepted that offer?
Glasgow did not offer to give it to me. Glasgow, naturally, offered to sell it to me. As we already have in industrial estates in Scotland a large quantity of land, including the whole of the Bellshill Estate, to be developed, I thought that we should concentrate our resources on what we already held, rather than use further public money to buy these 90 acres.
I congratulate the Secretary of State on the glimpse of imagination he showed in holding the E.F.T.A. meeting in Edinburgh. One of the difficulties about Scotland today is that too many people think that it is a backwater in which nothing ever happens, and they assume that all power and influence have passed to London. I hope that the Secretary of State will follow this up. I also welcome what the Secretary of State said about the need to bring research establishments to Scotland. Will he or the Secretary of State for Scotland give the Committee an assurance that, if there is a possibility of getting one of the United Nations agencies to come to Scotland, they will not only not oppose it but will promote it?
The Secretary of State challenged hon. Members on this side of the Committee to say what they would do if they were in his place. That is exactly what I intend to do. Before coming to that, however, I want to make one or two remarks about the situation as the Secretary of State outlined it. He said that there were 40,000 jobs in the pipeline for Scotland. This happens to be exactly the same number as there are new jobs available every year in the London area. It is not a question of the pipeline there; every year for a number of years 40,000 new jobs have been created in the London area. Thirty thousand of these have been office jobs. Scotland, in contrast, is to get 40,000 over an unknown period.
He went on to point out that there had been a decline in some of the traditional and heavy industries in Scotland, but what I found particularly disturbing about the digest of statistics was the decline as between 1962 and 1963 in electrical and mechanical engineering and chemicals. This shows how sensitive employment in Scotland is to any downturn in trading or any attempt to stop expansion For example, if within the next week or two the Bank Rate were to be increased or a similar policy adopted, we would soon find that the employment figures for Scotland would take on once again a gloomy complexion.
If there are to be another 3½ million people in the South-East, that will be a quite intolerable situation. Over and above the additional 1 million immigrants, the Committee on the South-East should have given more consideration to the Channel Tunnel and what that may mean in terms of additional people coming to the southern area of the country. The right hon. Gentleman took a rosy view of the situation in Scotland, but he must remember that there are special problems facing Scotland, particularly the shipbuilding industry, as well as sociological and other problems in areas which for many years have been dependent on one form of employment. These areas have been suffering persistently high rates of unemployment, dating back to the 'thirties.
Having said that, I will no doubt be asked what I would do. I would, first, do something which I have suggested for years. I regret the necessity to have to say it again, but there should be a
national plan covering the whole of Britain, and that means covering England, Scotland and Wales. I have been saying this for some years, but if the Secretary of State will not take it from me, perhaps he will read paragraph 45 of the Crowther Report to the Minister of Transport entitled "Traffic in Towns," which stated:
In any effective programme of urban modernisation, such as we have been outlining, it is possible to distinguish four main stages. First, there must be a clear statement of national objectives. Regional planning cannot work in isolation. Unless there is a policy on a national basis dealing with the location of industry and population, from which would flow policies in respect of roads, ports, air facilities, etc., regional planning cannot be successful. Without such a policy it is impossible to know what populations and kinds of employment must be planned for locally, nor the rate at which development can take place, nor can there be any certainty that some uncontrolled drift of events will not reduce all local plans to futility.
Not only do we not have such a plan but we do not even have within the Government the machinery to make that plan possible. We must have such a plan, not just for England but for the whole of the United Kingdom, including Scotland and Wales.
It is not a coincidence that so much employment, particularly of a higher type, is concentrated in the London area. We have chosen to centralise influence and power in the South. As the right hon. Gentleman said, the Scots are a proud people. It is because they are so proud that they should be given the chance and responsibility of running their own affairs. We must leave devolution to Scotland and Wales.
When considering the whole question of unemployment in Scotland it is important carefully to go into the question of the level of employment, the opportunities available there for highly skilled staff. A great deal of the work coming to Scotland is coming as a result of factories being set up by firms which have their main offices outside Scotland. These firms, from London or New York, leave their top executives outside Scotland, take their decisions outside Scotland and do most of their research and design outside Scotland. I am sure that the Secretary of State would find, if he talked to top industrialists in Scotland, to the universities and technical colleges there, that they are all keenly aware of the lack of top employment in Scotland. This is felt by many Scottish graduates who today are assuming that if they want to get anywhere—receive good remuneration and have adequate opportunities of advancement—they must leave Scotland and go elsewhere.
It may interest hon. Members to know that while visiting a chemical works in Scotland 10 days ago I was told that although the firm has places for 100 graduates, only 85 of the places were filled from Scotland because of the feeling that has grown up that opportunities are lower than elsewhere and that, if they are to get on in life, they must seek employment elsewhere.
I mention these points in an effort to persuade the Government that that sort of high employment will not be available in sufficient quantity in Scotland until we organise centres of economic and social development; centres where a considerable nucleus of high level people can be available and employed. To secure this, there must first be planning so that there is, covering the whole country, a structure of regional development.
Crowther made what I have been saying for years abundantly clear, for this is needed not only for one or two regions but for the country generally.
There must also be development authorities. We will not achieve development in the Highlands until there is a really effective executive development authority. What have the Government done? They have picked out two regions—Central Scotland and the northeast of England—and that is their policy. It is entirely wrong as a policy. They are starting from the wrong end. They have picked out two areas in an attempt to start regional planning of the country. They are doing it in a piecemeal way instead of starting by taking the country as a whole and having a general conspectus dealing with the whole of our industry, population, transport organisation and other vital matters.
We need growth area points not only for the purposes of industry but also from the social point of view—to arrest depopulation in the Borders and Highlands. The Government's present planning may make things even worse because there is a strong possibility that the growth of Central Scotland will be at the expense of the Borders and the Highlands. Depopulation is going on all the time and it would be regrettable if some areas were made more viable only at the expense of the already depopulated parts of the country.
Let us move on and consider what happens after a proper plan, covering the whole of the country, has been secured. In such a plan a certain amount of power must be given to Scotland, within the general framework of the plan covering the whole of Great Britain. Once regional plans for the whole country have been developed, one can consider the question of proper and adequate machinery to put individual developments into operation.
There is no profession in this country of experts in doing the sort of regional development we want and must have simply because there is no real development structure. The intelligent man from the university who wants to go into the sphere of regional development, as a scientist, economist, sociologist, and so on, does not have a profession open to him. I appreciate that we have development officers, but they are constantly leaving to take up other jobs, simply because they are underpaid and have too low a status. This problem, too, will have to be tackled if we are to have a proper and adequate structure for achieving development.
The Secretary of State went on to ask what extra inducements should be offered to persuade industry to go from the South -East to the North. I have made some suggestions and I agree that the Government have given considerable financial inducements to persuade industry to move north. Nevertheless, why will the Government not vary the rates of employers' contributions? Why will they not look at some of the proposals made by Mr. Colin Clark for differentiation in taxation between various parts of the country; having different tax arrangements for the under-employed areas compared with areas of over employment?
Why will the Government not consider the whole question of transport, housing, schools and amenities? The Secretary of State may recall an article which appeared in The Guardian some time ago in which it was pointed out that on almost every score the North and Scotland lagged behind the South. There were more slum black spots in the North, more sub-standard schools and, generally speaking, worse communications. All these points must be given consideration and, in most cases, even greater emphasis will have to be placed on the north of England and Scotland if these deficiencies are to be put right because these areas have been neglected for so many years. It is not a question of giving them as much as the South but of giving them more.
On the question of transport generally, not only is it a matter of having a coherent transport system but of fitting it to our needs. The Secretary of State has himself said that industrialists attach great importance to fast passenger travelling facilities. What has been happening in recent years? Until recently at least the whole of the internal air routes in Scotland—that is, apart from those going to England—were served by three aircraft—fewer than the Queen's Flight, as I pointed out in a previous debate.
How many helicopters are available in Scotland? I recall that when I pointed out some time ago that helicopters fly to the Scilly Isles and asked for them in Scotland, the Secretary of State thought that that was impossible. Nevertheless, helicopters do make these flights and these and other aircraft are suitable for Scottish transport. We are not particularly interested in aircraft like the VC 10, for in many parts of Scotland, particularly the islands, those aircraft would need more than the whole island for taking off and touching down. There should be, however, reasonably cheap aircraft available which would be suitable for the transport needs of Scotland.
If the Secretary of State wants suggestions, I have given him a few. I do not want to delay the Committee, but I must refer to the Scottish Development Department itself, and this pathetic development report. Words mean whatever one wants them to mean, like democracy behind the Iron Curtain. We are not considering a development report but a rag-bag of odd statistics affecting Scotland thrown together in a hotch-potch of figures. There is nothing really about industry, or about transport. Fancy a so-called development report which excludes industry and transport.
I thought for a glorious moment that it would deal with industrial training, and, indeed, in page 42 we have a paragraph on training—"Training Courses for Sewage Works Operators". That is the only mention of training. Over the page we have a miscellaneous section which deals with public cleansing and scavenging, the Radioactive Substances Act—and litter. The Committee will be glad to hear that over 20,000 anti-litter posters were issued over the year. This is Scottish development. This is what will stop migration and set Scottish industry on its great surge forward. We find in these pages, also, under the heading "Public Conveniences":
The attention of local authorities was drawn in August to the Public Lavatories (Turnstiles) Act, 1963…
This is Scottish development. We also find that "voting by councillors" is dealt with, and there is a picture of concrete shuttering. But there is nothing about industry or transport or trade.
Who are the people in the Scottish Development Department? I hope that we shall be told how many economists are employed there, and at what rates of pay. How many men of any business experience have been inside the place? How many sociologists are employed there? What powers have they, and where do they get their statistics? Has the Department any power to undertake projects on its own? If it has such power, I can think of many better projects than those listed in this report. The right hon. Gentleman should look at the docks. Is he aware that one of the difficulties is that freight rates to and from Leith are greater than freight rates from Rotterdam? This is because bigger ships cannot use Leith and get return cargoes. This is where we might have real development, in deepening our ports and building up complimentary trade. Has he looked at what has happened at the dry dock in the Clyde? Has he looked at the whole question of Highland development, and whether we are going about it in the right way?
There is a useful article in the Scottish Journal of Political Economy. I do not agree with all that it says, but it is an expert and useful article on whether the amount of money spent in the Highlands is well spent. I draw the right hon.
Gentleman's attention to one of the conclusions in page 278. It states:
After total investments exceeding £220 million in the first ten years of the Programme of Highland Development, the population of the region fell from 285,786 in 1951 to 277,716 in 1961.
The Secretary of State spoke about industrial content. He said that the hon. Member for Kilmarnock had said that there was no industrial content but that there was. But there is absolutely no skilled analysis of industrial content. It is not always a case of increasing investment but of investing more profitably.
He says that there are a few small firms making components for the motor industry, but has the Department found out how much extra demand Rootes is creating, and how much of what is nominally assistance for Rootes is going to the Midlands of England? Is it known what projects in Scotland do provide the employment and the input we want?
Again, in the article in the "Scottish Journal of Political Economy" we find the following:
As assessment of the performance of the Programme of Highland Development is limited by the poverty of statistical information on regional economic activity: however, the facts presented in this paper indicate that the Government's Highland Policy has fallen far short of its objectives of economic growth, viable communities, and ' opportunities for useful employment.' Reasons for the policy failure are not hard to find: there is no evidence of the application of economic analysis to the Programme of Highland Development.
We are haunted by this curse of amateurism—this belief that all that sort of thing can be done by well-intentioned men, many of whom were educated for different purposes in inappropriate disciplines. Scotland is being bled to death by it. It has serious problems that need serious and expert application. This work should be done by the Scottish Office, which should have a far stronger sociological and economic unit. But if the Scottish Office does not do it, someone else must.
There are serious questions arising in the shipbuilding industry. One can talk to any shipbuilder on the Clyde and he will tell one that already it is impossible for Europe to compete with Japan in the building of certain types of ships, and if this continues it will become true throughout the shipbuilding industry. Ships are getting bigger, and there is the difficulty of getting them into the tiny River Clyde. We are building bigger ships, but who is giving thought to that aspect? Who is considering how we are to handle yards screwed up among the houses, roads and railways down the Clyde? It is not mentioned in the Report. In one Japanese yard there are 150 graduates. Who is wondering whether we are producing the right type of trained persons, and whether there are the right opportunities for them?
We can look at the question of office development. There is in the newspapers today reference to the Report of the Location of Offices Bureau. It is stated that the Bureau has managed to get 4,000 people moved from the centre of London to the suburbs. I have not read the full Report, but I gather that that is all that has been done so far. This is extremely serious. Why do not the Government send the Forestry Commission to Scotland? After all, there are 50 per cent. more acres under forest in Scotland than in England and Wales put together.
All this type of problem should be studied. Scotland has special problems, but no means of tackling them.
The Committee should rebel against the amount of information it is given. It is absolutely scandalous that Scottish Members should be asked to come to this debate with the amount of information they are given. The statistics are a year out of date, and on vital points there is no information whatever. This may be the last debate of this kind of this Parliament but, for goodness' sake, when we have a new Parliament let us bring expert attention to bear on these problems, and let us have a Scottish Office with more power and more guts.
I have listened with interest to the rousing speech of the Leader of the Liberal Party, the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond). I thought that he was at least more constructive—or, perhaps, less destructive—than his fellow shadow Secretary of State, the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross). I am inclined to agree with some of the things which the right hon. Gentleman said should be done, but then, of course, what one has to remember is that a great many of those things are already being done by the Government.
The right hon. Gentleman made an eloquent plea for planning. When one gets the Leader of the Liberal Party calling for a State plan one really can say that we are all planners now. He emphasised, in particular, the need for regional plans, but surely that is exactly what the Government are doing with their plan for Central Scotland, which, as has been explained over and over again, is the first of three plans, and is to be followed by regional plans for the Highlands and for the Borders.
I must say that I would be grateful if my right hon. Friend would give us a publication date for the other two plans, as that would save us having to say all this over and over again in every debate on the subject.
The right hon. Gentleman also talked, as have other hon. Members, of the need for better transport, better housing, better schools and better hospitals. When my right hon. Friend calls that the infrastructure, for some reason he is laughed out of court, but that is exactly what everyone asks for and what he is providing, to start with in Central Scotland and going on, we hope, to the Borders and the Highlands. I heartily endorse what the right hon. Gentleman said about the type of employment. It is a very unfortunate fact that in spite of the unemployment in Scotland there is also a shortage of technicians and skilled workers. I was very glad, for that reason, to hear what my right hon. Friend had to say about increasing Scotland's share of research and development. I hope that these two, a better supply of technicians and increased research and development in Scotland, will go hand in hand.
Nobody is readier than I am to recognise the magnitude of the problem which we face in Scotland, and which certainly exists in my own constituency as much as anywhere, or the difficulty of finding a solution. As the Toothill Report said, and I think that we all accept it, there is no simple or single remedy. But in spite of that, I still cannot help feeling surprised in every Scottish debate at the absolute refusal of the Opposition to recognise that there is now a very considerable improvement in the situation and that that improvement is largely, though not entirely—because private enterprise in industry comes into it as well—the result of measures taken by the Government to encourage industrial growth.
I am also surprised by the way in which the Opposition manage to get through these debates without once making, as my right hon. Friend pointed out, any constructive proposals or suggestions whatever. It is quite true that my right hon. Friends are the Government, but even so considering the confidence with which right hon. and hon. Members opposite have about the outcome of the next General Election—[HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear."]—a completely unjustified confidence, I would add, they might at least give some indication of what they would do if they came into power, though I suppose one can deduce a good deal from the presence of Clause Four in their party constitution.
It seems to me that right hon. and hon. Members opposite are determined to be completely destructive and to spread gloom and despondency on purely ideological and party political grounds, quite regardless of the facts and of the effect which this produces not only in Scotland but throughout the world and of the impression which they give of Scotland. What hon. Members opposite do not seem to recognise is that this is to some extent a matter of atmosphere and climate and that when progress is made it is made regularly in spite of them. The basis of the whole concept of growth points is that growth should be self-generating, but it will not be self-generating in the wrong climate. The efforts of the Opposition seem largely directed to making the climate as unfavourable as possible to growth.
Let us look at the history of the last few years. The Government have taken a number of measures to improve the economic situation in Scotland. First, there have been the Local Employment Acts of 1960 and 1963 and, secondly, the whole series of great projects such as in Ravenscraig, Bathgate, Linwood and Fort William—all encouraged and helped by the Government. There has been the Finance Act of 1963, and, finally, there has been the Government's plan for Central Scotland. What is more, all these measures are producing results. But, in spite of everything, the Opposition persist in refusing to accept those results.
The latest report of the Federation of British Industries shows that more Scottish firms are now working at full capacity than at any time in the past five years. It also shows that 84 per cent. of the firms covered by the inquiry have maintained or increased the numbers employed in them. Let hon. members also consider the state of the tourist industry, in which I declare a small personal interest. The report of the Scottish Tourist Board—[Interruption.]—tells us that in the year 1963–64 more money was invested in the tourist industry in Scotland that any of the past 30 or 40 years, which shows that the Government does not always need to do everything for everybody.
The hon. Member knows very well the great concern and anxiety in Ardrossan, Saltcoats, Stevenston and Kilwinning because of the lack of job opportunities and the heavy unemployment running at an average of 7 per cent. Can he tell us of a single factory in his own constituency which has been located there under the Local Employment Acts despite the fact that depopulation in his constituency has run at about 4,000 during the past 10 years and the number of the population is still going down? If one adds to that the unemployment figure there is a serious position in that area.
I am talking about the tourist industry which has done quite a lot to help itself, so much so that the Government tried to take a little money off it to help it still more. The fact is that in 1963 there were over 5 million visitors to Scotland, of whom nearly 750,000 came from overseas, and it looks very much as if there will be more still this year. This provides employment not only to the hotel trade and to every branch of catering but also to commerce and to the farmers. Incidentally, the hon. Member for Kilmarnock hit on the one thing about Scottish farming which he thinks is least helpful, namely, that the numbers employed in Scottish agriculture are going down. He does not think of saying that the output of Scottish agriculture is going up steadily.
We are talking about employment today and we are concerned about the people who lose their jobs. We did not say that farming was inefficient, far from it, but the hon. Member, in a prelude to his speech, said that measures taken by the Government have brought about improvements. I am waiting for him to tell us how measures taken by the Government brought these millions of people to Scotland, including from overseas, and some to his hotel.
If there is a prosperous and happy atmosphere in a country it brings people in, and if that country's assets are exploited people come into it from overseas, but if we draw a picture of a gloomy depressed country, as the hon. Member does, we do not get those results. Although I cannot say that I have been lucky enough to receive any help from the Government, there is nothing to prevent anybody applying for help under the Local Employment Acts, or a hotel or other tourist establishment, and I certainly know of hotels whose proprietors have done that successfully.
I was coming to that and I was going to make a plea to my right hon. Friend to do what he can to stop that happening.
The hon. Member for Central Ayrshire (Mr. Manuel) and I are seeing the Minister of Transport tomorrow and I hope that what we have to say to him on this and other connected subjects will do some good. It seems to me that one of the great assets of the Clyde are the steamer trips in the summer, and I cannot imagine that the amount saved by the British Transport Commission or the Caledonian Steam Packet Co. can possibly justify this cheeseparing approach to this problem.
To return, as I am sure the hon. Member for Kilmarnock would like me to return, to the general question of unemployment. With approximately 97 per cent. of Scotland's working population in jobs we have on average about 3 per cent. unemployed, and, if I remember aright, that was the figure that the late Hugh Gaitskell gave as his definition of full employment.
That is my recollection. But it is certainly a very much more favourable figure than prevails in the United States, France, Germany or a large number of other highly developed countries. It is true that this is only an average. True, there are black spots and, as I have often said before, my constituency is one of them, although I am glad to say that there, too, the figures for this June are a good deal better than they were for last June.
However, if there are black spots, there are also white spots and they should be remembered too. In addition, the signs from the development districts and the growth points which the Opposition persist in ignoring seem very encouraging indeed. One of the most encouraging signs is that unemployment amongst school leavers is much lower than it was this time last year. Between February and June unemployment fell by 4,000 despite an influx of 10,000 school leavers. Between January and June vacancies doubled, despite the entry into employment of nearly 24,000 young people. All those are good signs.
I was very glad to hear my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade point out that out of £112½ million made available under the Local Employment Acts, £58·7 million has gone to Scotland. That is quite a good share. It also means 56,000 jobs. That surely is abundant justification of those Acts. What is more, my right hon. Friend told us that up to last week there had been over 1,600 applications from firms wishing to set up and expand in Scotland. That, I think, is more than four times the number of applications that were made in the previous 12 months.
In our debate on this subject in March—and here I come to the point which the hon. Member for Central Ayrshire asked me to clear up—I mentioned two newly-established and expanding firms in my constituency which had applied for aid to enable them to expand further. I asked my right hon. Friend to do what he could to press on with the consideration of their cases. I am glad to say that the Government's reaction in both these cases has been positive and that it seems likely that they will be given the opportunity to expand further. Those are both newly-established firms which are expanding already, and this illustrates extremely well the working of a growth point.
If the hon. Member for Central Ayrshire will forgive me, perhaps I might trespass into his constituency, as he has done me the honour of trespassing into mine. As he knows, although I cannot say that he shows any sign of welcoming it, there is a growth point centred on Irvine. Look at the results that have been produced already.
It is also true that the hon. Member and I together pressed for an advance factory at Kilwinning and the advance factory arrived in advance of the growth point. There is also Chemstrant, the new nylon fabric factory, at Dundonald.
Hon. Members persist in ignoring the fact that a growth point is called a growth point because it grows. If it is not as near to Irvine as all that, it shows how fast the growth point is growing. I am sure both hon. Members will agree that Skefco in the Irvine area is expanding and is providing more jobs.
Surely the exact location does not matter. As I say, this simply illustrates how fast the growth point is expanding. The great thing about these new industries is that they mean new jobs. I am shocked by the way in which hon. Members opposite struggle in order not to have to admit that there is any improvement in the situation and absolutely refuse to give the Government any credit whatever. I am prepared to give credit to the Labour Government for some of the things they did when they were in office, but the same cannot be said of hon. Members opposite.
Between January and March, 1964, 50 new factories were opened in Scotland, providing 2,860 new jobs—twice the number in the previous quarter. In April, 1964, nine new advance factories were announced for Great Britain, five of which were for Scotland. At East Kilbride the development corporation has built 75 factories in the last nine years, all occupied and providing 8,000 jobs. At Livingston there is a new American factory which will provide 2,000 jobs.
Hon. Members opposite greet these facts either with groans or with laughter. The groans, I suppose, are because this is an American factory. We know the hostility with which hon. Members opposite greeted the news that American capital had been injected into the Rootes Group. There could, in fact, be no better news than that American capital had been injected into the Rootes Group.
The hon. Member is talking such nonsense. He will be aware that Chemstrant could not come to Ayrshire at all but for the work, the efforts and the pledges of the Labour-controlled Ayr County Council which is prepared to spend over £1 million on a water scheme to bring water from Loch Doon to Drybridge. Is it not time that he stopped reading this prepared guff?
I am not criticising the local authorities in Ayrshire, whether they be Labour-controlled or not. The four burghs of Ardrossan, Saltcoats, Stevenston and Kilwinning have done a very good job, as the hon. Member for Central Ayrshire knows, in trying to promote prosperity in that part of the world, and I take off my hat also to the Irvine Council which has done an extremely good job. But this does not stop hon Members opposite making a terrific fuss at the news that an American company had injected some capital into the Rootes Group, so much so that they completely overlook the benefits which might, and probably would, be brought to Scotland.
In exactly the same way, hon. Members jeer at my right hon. Friend for his visits to America. They say, "What is the good of his going there?" In fact, a lot of good has been done. A lot of American industry has come to Scotland since my right hon. Friend's visit. There are now over 60 companies of North American origin in Scotland.
No, not since his visit, but I have already mentioned at least one American enterprise which has come since his visit. That happened only a few months ago.
The fact is that, in all these things, hon. Members opposite are guided by strong ideological obsessions.
Tito has his own ideas and, on the whole, he makes them work a good deal better than hon. Members opposite would, and he has a much more realistic approach than they have. Both at home and abroad, hon. Members opposite are persistently out of date. They are still the slaves of a nineteenth century Marxist Socialist ideology. [Laughter.] The hon. Gentleman mentioned Tito. When Tito starts introducing things like commercial television, it is high time for hon. Members opposite to start pulling up their socks. They are the slaves of Clause Four. [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear."] I am glad to hear assent to that, because I understand that there has been a certain amount of difference in the Labour Party between those who support Clause Four and those who are not so keen on it.
—and any number of other things, hon. Members opposite show how their minds are obsessed by ideological prejudice. Surely, if Castro can trade with Franco, hon. Members opposite need not be so fussy about it. They are completely out of date. They still have not made a single constructive proposal as to what they would do. As far as one can make out, their only answer, like last time, would be to nationalise everything they could lay their hands on. They would direct industry and direct labour. And as for Scotland, their only answer to her problems would be to bring in a lot of money-losing State-owned factories.
I wish that the hon. and gallant Member for Bute and North Ayrshire (Sir F. Maclean) could be script writer for the Prime Minister. He has made the kind of speech which I like to quote in my constituency, because, otherwise, people could not believe that the Tories indulge in such utter nonsense and irrelevancy about the problems of Scotland.
Both the hon. and gallant Gentleman and the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade quoted figures. Then comes the question: why did the Government lose Rutherglen? If the Government's record is so wonderful, why were the people of Rutherglen so ungracious as to kick out the Tory candidate and return the Labour candidate? Hon. and right hon. Members opposite ought to understand how completely disillusioned and angry the Scottish people are at the Government's record over the past 12 or 13 years.
The Prime Minister goes round the country telling people what the evils of Socialism would be and what the benefits are which they have derived from his Government's period of office. The right hon. Gentleman was in the Chamber today for exactly one hour. He was sent for because my hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross) commented critically on his absence. He has now gone, and we shall probably not see him again until the Secretary of State for Scotland gets up to speak. Why did not the Prime Minister choose to take part in the debate? If the Government's record is so wonderful, why did he not treat the Committee to the scintillating oratory which we all expect of him? If the record were so good, he would have come to the Dispatch Box instead of transferring the speech, as he transfers his Questions, to the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade.
Of course, one does not deny that certain things have happened in Scotland. We have got the motor car industry, we have got the pulp mill, and so on. But the basic facts show clearly in the bare statistics of unemployment which my hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock gave. In June, 1951, there were 42,310 unemployed in Scotland, and in June, 1964, there were 70,617. Those figures express in summary form what the Government have achieved—a 64 per cent. overall increase in registered unemployed in Scotland.
More than that, the relative position of Scotland as compared with other regions, particularly London and the South-East, has worsened in the same period. Between June, 1951 and June, 1964, the increase in unemployment in London and the South-East has been 36 per cent. In Scotland it has been 67 per cent., so, relatively, we are in a worse position than we were 13 years ago.
These facts were confirmed by the figures given in the House yesterday by the Minister of Labour. The Minister of Labour's complacency yesterday was quite breathtaking. He said, in effect, "We are doing better than we did last year, with 24,000 fewer unemployed". This means that there were 94,000 people unemployed in June, 1963. This was the kind of figure which we attacked during mid-winter. The right hon. Gentleman said that the position was improving and that this was what mattered.
Plainly, whatever the Government might have done has not been enough. We had a fanfare of trumpets when the White Paper on Central Scotland was produced. It was something new, something revolutionary. Certainly, in Britain it was. But elsewhere in Europe there has been national planning for very many years. What is called in Italy, the Vanoni plan, had its genesis in 1949, four years after the war. It anticipated the creation of 4 million new jobs between 1955 and 1964.
Of course; but they have a national plan. This is the point that I am making. Our argument is that we must have a national plan before we think about regional plans.
It has often been repeated in this Chamber that France has long-term national planning, although one must admit—and I freely admit—that there is a greater degree of central direction and dictation in France vis-à-vis the regional authorities than probably we would tolerate in this country. The Republic: of Ireland recently published the second part of its second programme for economic expansion. Its national plan envisages a 7 per cent. annual increase in industrial output between 1960 and 1970. Our target is 4 per cent. Even Spain, about which we have heard a lot recently in this Chamber, produced on 1st January this year a four-year economic development plan with the aim of a 6 per cent. annual growth in the gross national product.
In almost every case national plans have been worked out before regional plans, although the relationship between them varies. I think that this is a common factor among them all. The only revolutionary thing we have done is to put the cart before the horse. We have put the regional plans before the national plan. It is like trying to fit a jigsaw puzzle together without looking at the overall picture. This is what we are trying to do. It is the kind of amateurism about which the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond) was complaining. We do not know what the national plan is and, therefore, there is no guarantee that the regional plans produced will fit the non-existent pattern of a non-existent national plan.
Let me give three examples of inadequacy of provision in Government policy. I quote, first, what might appear to be a relatively small local constituency problem. There is a small boat-building firm, Marine Services, in a small but lovely seaside resort in Fife—Aberdour. It does not employ very many people. When it applied in December, 1962, for a building grant under Section 3 of the Local Employment Act it employed one woman, four apprentices and five skilled men. It wanted to erect a new building which it estimated would cost about £7,000. It estimated, too, that within a year of completion of the new building it would be able to employ another ten men and possibly 30 within three years. As I say, it made its application on 21st December, 1962. On 7th June, 1963, its application was rejected—six months to say "No" to an application for £6,000 or £7,000.
I wrote to the Board of Trade in February this year. It replied," B.O.T.A.C. has been set up as an independent body of businessmen to make decisions. We cannot interfere and we cannot tell you the reasons for its rejection of the application ". My argument is the same as that which was used by Sir Robert Maclean, when he gave evidence before the Estimates Committee on the working of the Local Employment Act. He argued very forcibly that we should make every endeavour to encourage the small man with enterprise and initiative, and if that means more risk capital being staked by B.O.T.A.C. that does not matter.
I do not want to say in public what I might say about this small firm, but I know that the men at the top were very anxious to go ahead. They have the technical skill, although they might not have the accountancy and business ability which one would like. Nevertheless, I think that B.O.T.A.C. should have taken the risk and said, "This is just the kind of small industry which we want in that part of Fife. Go ahead, and if the £6,000 is lost, so what?". Yesterday's disclosures about the VC10, Blue Streak and the millions of pounds being thrown down the drain, while, for £6,000, this small firm is given the brush-off, seems to me to suggest that the Government are not serious when they say that they want to encourage small firms of this kind.
I turn to the second example of inefficiency and inadequacy in what the Government are doing or pretending to do. The White Paper on Central Scotland makes some platitudinous remarks about the desirability of providing more office jobs in Scotland. Certainly, since then we have had the decision on the Post Office Savings Bank, although, as my hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock said, the matter could not have been handled in a worse way from the point of view of public relations with the unions concerned.
As the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland pointed out, today's newspapers show that the success of the Location of Offices Bureau has been extremely limited. It has just managed to put such offices as have decided to move in the suburban areas of London, thus adding to the commuter problem. It was also stated in this morning's newspapers that the Minister of Housing and Local Government, in a speech at Eltham last night, admitted that far too many offices had been allowed to be built in London, that £8 million worth of office building was standing empty in London and that 8 million sq. ft. of office building was standing empty in Great Britain.
This is the very antithesis of planning. The Government should take action, and I hope that a future Government will do so, to curtail office building in the London area much more drastically than has been done hitherto. I refuse to believe, and I think that most thinking people refuse to believe, that the Location of Offices Bureau is an adequate or the only answer to this problem.
I come to the third example of what could be done by the Government, but is not being done. I refer to the Location of Government research establishments and those of nationalised industries and their headquarters. Looking at the nationalised industries, I take, first, the gas industry It has five research stations. Four of them are in London and one in Solihull, Warwickshire. Why is there not one in Scotland? We have a quite big Scottish gas industry. Why should the research for the whole of the gas industry be in London and the Midlands?
The electricity industry has its headquarters and production, inspection and test sections in London and its research laboratories at Leatherhead, Surrey. Its engineering laboratories are at March-wood, Southampton. All the research for Scottish electricity is done down here. Why should this be so?
The coal industry, through the Coal Board, has its headquarters in Hobart House, London. Why should not those headquarters be directed into one of the mining areas? That would be one of the great advantages of public enterprise. The Government have control over its location and there is no reason why the Board's headquarters should not be out- side the capital. It just happens to be convenient for it and for the employees to be here. It was, of course, convenient for the Post Office Savings Bank employees to be down here, but it was deliberate Government policy to direct that Department to Glasgow. What applies in that case should apply to the headquarters of some of the nationalised industries.
The address of the Coal Utilisation Council is Rochester Row, London, and that of the British Coal Utilisation Research Association, Leatherhead, Surrey. The only reasons for these locations can be that the weather is nice, the climate mild and they are situated near the great magnet of London. If the Government are serious about this matter, they should give these people notice to get out. They have the power to do so.
I am not afraid of the words "direction" and "control" Last Friday, we had a debate on spray irrigation. The Government used the word "control" 13 times in the first three Clause of the Bill, so they should not be afraid of controls. Nor are they when it suits them.
British Railways' Research Department is at Blandford House, Melbury Terrace, London. I have looked up the D.S.I.R. research associations. In Appendix IV of the 1963 Annual Report, 38 of them are listed. All of them get Government grant, which, in some cases, is substantial. Of the 38, only one is in Scotland, and that is the Jute Trade Research Association, which could not very well be anywhere else than in Dundee. Appendix III of the D.S.I.R. Report lists 15 research stations, of which only two are in Scotland, the Torry Research Station and the National Engineering Laboratory, at East Kilbride.
This is evidence of something that the Government could do and it is something about which the Scottish Council has made representations. So long as we have all this research for the nationalised industries and the D.S.I.R. laboratories in London and the South-East, London will remain the main attraction. That is why the Government's South-East Study accepts this as inevitable. The Government are not planning to remove population from London, but are planning for the inevitability of its increase by 3½ million.
Why should the Government fatalistically accept this as inevitable? If they were serious about dispersal, they would have made plans on the assumption that there would be a diminution in population in the South-East. Certainly, they would have done nothing to encourage the coming into the area of 1 million people plus a natural growth of 2½ million or whatever the figure is. I have given these three examples to show what additional measures could be taken.
In his opening speech, the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade chivvied hon. Members on this side of the Committee about direction of industry and publicly-owned industries. It is stated specifically in our election programme (a) that industry will not be directed and (b) that publicly-owned industries will be established. Nothing could be clearer. Where public money is being spent on research, publicly-financed industries which are based upon that research should be publicly owned; and where public money is injected into private enterprise the public should have a share of the equity. There is nothing wrong in that and nothing could be clearer.
As I have said before, we have stated, for example, in our plans for the National Health Service, that because of the extortionate profits which are being made by the firms which are supplying drugs to the National Health Service we shall establish publicly-owned drug manufacturing concerns which will be sent into the areas of unemployment like my own and many other parts of Scotland which are feeling extremely frustrated and angry at the inadequacy of the Government's provisions to date.
These are specific proposals. Nothing could be clearer. We understand that hon. Gentlemen and hon. Ladies opposite violently disagree with them. Very well. We will fight the election on them. Nothing could be fairer than that. If Rutherglen is any indication, we shall have nothing to fear when the time comes.
I am pleased to follow the hon. Member for Fife, West (Mr. W. Hamilton), although there was a great deal in his speech with which I disagreed. I certainly agree with the hon. Member, however, concerning science laboratories and the like. There is no doubt that the hon. Member and the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond) were quite right in saying that Scotland lacks the top people in this respect. Industry naturally goes to the areas where scientific research and the like are carried out.
I could not agree more with the hon. Member when he said that the position in London is getting ridiculous. London and this area of England are grossly overcrowded. When a national emergency such as war arises, everybody rushes to get out of London as quickly as possible. When war is over and peace returns, the people stream back into these areas. I remind the hon. Member for Fife, West, however, that his party were in power in 1949 when the Italians produced their national plan. I do not remember the party opposite producing a national plan during their six years of office.
The White Paper on Central Scotland was certainly an important step in the planning of public investment and land use. It was of major importance to Scotland. Like other hon. Members, however, I am worried about the effect that this will have upon areas such as mine in the Highlands of Scotland. I am glad that the Government, through the Scottish Development Group, are studying the economy of the Highlands and Islands and the related physical and social problems.
My reasons for welcoming that study are easy to explain. I have always maintained that we must have a greater distribution of industry in this country of ours. It was, I think, the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross) who mentioned the Cairncross Report. The Government should have taken more account of that Report in 1953. It is obvious that when we have burghs and small county towns where facilities already exist, those are the areas in which it is easiest to build and develop. Cairncross is in a very powerful position now, and I hope he still holds these views and can exert some influence on the Government.
I think there is a greater chance. My right hon. Friend has done, as a farmer, a great deal for the farming community. I hope that he will follow this up. [Interruption.] The Price Review was welcomed by all sections of the farming community and was a great stimulus to it.
We must have more distribution of industry. The position in Scotland is certainly acute. There is a gross over-concentration in the Scottish industrial belt, and the tendency seems to be to continue to concentrate industry there. However, nobody in Scotland begrudges that increased industrial activity, and hon. Members opposite recognise this. I think of the motor vehicle plants at Bathgate and Linwood and the new dock at Greenock. The hon. Member for Fife, West also mentioned the move of the Post Office Savings Bank to Glasgow.
I shall confine my remarks to the Highlands and Islands. I am sure no one will forget that the Highlands and Islands represent 47 per cent. of the area of Scotland. It is an area which in the past has been a breeding ground for the industrial belt in the South. My father had to move out because there was nothing for him to do in the area. Luckily, he made his fortune in the South and was able to go back and spend a good deal of it in the Highlands. There are many hon. Members with Highland names whose forebears came to the South, and they were perhaps not as fortunate as I was in being able to go back and live in the North of Scotland.
In Scotland we now have 4 million people, but only 270,000 live in the Highlands and Islands. Depopulation of the rural areas is still taking place. The largest rural area in the Highlands is one of the few areas in the country today—there are some areas in Wales and to a certain extent in the South-west—which are capable of being developed.
The Scottish Development Group certainly has a great deal of material for its study. Will all the reviews of and reports about the Highlands it has a mass of information. More than 20 Government departments and other bodies are dealing with problems in the Highlands and Islands. The sorting out of this lot alone must be a problem!
I feel that things are improving and on the move. I believe that the Government are now beginning to achieve things. I agree with the hon. Member for Fife, West that there is still a lot to do in respect of Scotland as a whole and the Highlands. But changes are taking place in the world, with science and technology, and these changes are certainly, though perhaps to a smaller extent, being felt in the Highlands.
I hope that the survey by the Development Group will convince the country and the Government that the Highlands have a larger part to play in the national economy. We must ensure that the best possible use is made of our many natural resources in the Highlands, and we must make the most use of our land in every sense. In the Scottish Grand Committee this morning we debated forestry, and I think all would agree that there is still a great deal of waste land in Scotland. I agree with hon. Members who say that the deer forests, for instance, represent a great deal of misuse of land. I am sure that a great deal of forestry could be developed there, to the benefit of the whole area.
The first thing that must be done in studying the Highlands is to set up machinery to co-ordinate the work of the various Government Departments and other agencies in the Highlands and elsewhere. The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond) ridiculed the Report on Highland Development, but I would draw attention to what appears on page 18:
The Highland County Development Officers have had regular meetings under the auspices of the Department with representatives of agencies and Departments concerned with Highland development. These meetings provide a forum for the exchange of views, and ensure that effective contact is maintained between the local authorities. Departments, and executive bodies concerned with industrial development in the Highlands.
That might not sound very much, but I submit that it is certainly an initial step towards the achievement of some cooperation. I agree that something much more definite must be done.
I am coming round to the view that we should have some form of development authority for the area, but what is being done is certainly a step in the right direction. The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland mentioned the development officers. There seem to be good personal relations between the Development Group, the development officers and the Board of Trade. Since the establishment of the development officers, the county councils have certainly been feeling their way in regard to the duties of those officers.
The object should, after all, be to encourage the development of existing businesses and, if possible, to attract new industries. But the county development officers must surely have full regard to all the industrial potential and facilities in their areas—premises, sites and so on—so that any prospective industrialist, small or large, can find out what there is to offer in the area.
Although in many instances these officers are under the county council planning authority, it is right that they should be in the closest contact with the Development Group and the Board of Trade. They must play their part as co-ordinators. I understand that the Opposition recognise that there should be a Highland development authority. We must find out—I am trying to help in this—what that means, what they are going to do and what powers they will take from the local authorities. The local authorities themselves must know this if we are to get their co-operation.
As I see it, these development officers should co-ordinate the various agencies and bodies within their own areas, cooperating with the Development Department of the Scottish Office and the Board of Trade. The first step lies in industrial development. They must also be able to tell local authorities and others where and how Government grants may be obtained. I have had a letter from the district council of Girloch producing ideas and asking me for advice. Obviously, a local authority must go first of all to development officers, who should be able to give them advice and who are in contact with the Board of Trade and the Development Department of the Scottish Office.
Local authorities are employing development officers for industrial development and I understand that the Scottish Council is also employing someone for the same purpose, as is the Scottish Industry Development Board. There may be room for more but we do not want too much overlapping. All this should be co-ordinated by the Development Department at the Scottish Office.
Much remains to be done. The hon. Member for Fife, West mentioned a small shipbuilding firm and I could not agree more with him. The Board of Trade helps smaller firms more than one thinks under B.O.T.A.C., but there is the snag that he himself mentioned. He said that the directors of that small concern were technically sound but had perhaps slipped up in accountancy.
The trouble is that many of these small firms find it difficult to deal with their accountancy side. There is a grave lack of accountants in the rural areas and certainly in the Highlands. We must do more to help small firms solve their accountancy problems so that they are able to present their case properly to the Board of Trade. The Scottish Council could help in a practical way in this respect. We have to look at some of these industries to see whether they are viable and economic. The hon. Member will agree that there is nothing worse than setting up an industry in an area and then seeing it close down two or three years later.
Although a lot remains to be done in the Highlands, things are on the move. There is greater expenditure on roads, for instance, and I welcome the setting up of the Highlands Transport Board to co-ordinate transport in the area. No development can take place without adequate communications. Of course, services are difficult in a large area which is under-populated and whose people are scattered. I am glad that the railway line has been reprieved, but people are still worried about how long the reprieve will last and about the alternatives the Government have in mind. I hope that tonight we shall hear what those alternative methods are to be.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland mentioned the air services. It is scandalous that, in the whole of the Highlands area, only three aircraft are working. One so often hears it anounced over the loudspeakers that technical trouble has caused delay for an hour or so. This is because they have not enough aircraft available. Complaint is still made that the services are uneconomic, but it is impossible very often to get a seat on a plane north of Glasgow. Time and again, I have found myself, 10 days to a fornight in advance of the trip, on the waiting list for a flight from Glasgow to Inverness. It is scandalous that there are no proper air communications in the Highlands.
I have written so many letters about it that tomorrow one of the head chaps is coming to see me here about it. I hope that the hon. Member for Glasgow, Govan (Mr. Rankin) will join me at about 11 o'clock tomorrow morning and we can discuss the matter, as he is so interested.
As the hon. Gentleman intervened I thought that I would graciously ask him to help me. I hope he will come if he can.
I welcome the fact that the Highland Fund is to be used for the administration of loans and the granting of £50,000 to help small industries. The Fund has already helped considerably. In a country with a sparse population, any small industry which employs only a few people is of great value. The Highland Fund is doing a good job and I am glad that it, too, is working towards greater co-operation with other bodies.
One suggestion put by the Scottish Tourist Board takes up a point which I myself have raised before and which has often been made. I must first declare an interest because I have a small interest in hotels in the Highlands. A hotel on the west coast of the Highlands is equally as valuable to the area as a small industry and the Tourist Board urges the Government to recognise hotels as an industry. The Board says:
Further, the industry must, without delay, be recognised as an industry: hotels and boarding houses should receive from the Government fiscal concessions so that their development can proceed more rapidly. The cost of improvements, extensions and repairs should, as in many other industries, be chargeable to revenue and not to capital as at present,
and industrial building allowances should apply to the entire hotel and catering industry.
I am sure that is right.
We are encouraging more and more people to go to the Highlands and we have not enough accommodation at the height of summer. It is difficult for hoteliers under the present system to make additions to their buildings. The Tourist Board's suggestion should be taken up by the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the hotel industry should get the advantages that other industries enjoy. The Government's assistance to crofting houses will certainly help to provide more accommodation.
Despite what the Opposition may say, the Local Employment Acts of 1960 and 1963 have had an effect in the Highlands. In my own area there are the Invergordon Distillery, the Dingwall Engineering Company and the Evanton Box Making Company now employing 120 people and all assisted under B.O.T.A.C.
We must recognise the Invergordon-Inverness area as a growth area. We have proved that industries can move into the area and make it a rational, reasonable and economic reality. There is a breakthrough. It must be right to encourage and stimulate the growth of industries in these promising localities. I am not too depressed. Unemployment has been bad, but it is now the lowest for seven years. Surely that is an encouraging sign.
I am sure that the Government can prove that there are tremendous advantages to be gained in the Highlands and in areas such as Wales where there is fresh air and where there are unlimited water supplies and where, as at Invergordon, there are fine harbour facilities. The harbour at Invergordon was run down after the Royal Navy ceased to use it, but it is now used for the oiling of N.A.T.O. ships. It is wrong that valuable assets such as this should not be used. More information must be given through the development officers and Board of Trade and the Development Department, so that it can be generally understood that the Highlands have a much greater part to play in the national economy.
I am very pleased to follow the hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty (Sir John MacLeod) whose speech was very moderate and almost progressive. It was certainly more progressive than that of the hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire (Sir F. Maclean) who, unfortunately, has now left. I am sorry that he is no longer with us, because I propose at least to put on record some of my objections to his remarks.
Before doing so, I should like to say that in his modest and moderate speech the hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty brought us back to reality. He said that my hon. Friends were unfair in not admitting that the Government's measures had had an effect on Scotland. I do not think that any of my hon. Friends has gone so far as to say that they have had no effect. The argument has been that they have been inadequate to the problem.
It is not good enough to record that we have done so many good things in previous years and then to shut our eyes to the many remaining difficulties. As a doctor, I would quickly run out of patients if all I did was to keep them alive but never fully recovered from illness. It is important to give people hope that they will get out of their difficulties. The Government's plans and White Papers have not fully diagnosed Scotland's illnesses and have given little hope that things will get better. That is our objection. It is wrong to see only half the picture and to relate only half the story.
The hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire suggested we had played no part in the recent improvements to Scotland's economy. When he says that of the efforts which we have made over the last dozen years he does a grave disservice not only to us but to truth. Is it not within the memory of hon. Members that two Conservative Members and two Labour Members jointly went to see the Prime Minister to ask him to intervene in the negotiations about the graving dock? Was there any party capital to be derived from that? There did not seem to be any at the time. Both pairs of hon. Members joined together as one united team.
The hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire referred to Ravenscraig. Does he not recall that one of the few times in Scottish Parliamentary history when both the Unionist and Labour groups got together was when they made earnest efforts to press the Government to make sure that Scotland got a steel strip mill? Is it not also true that the only objector to that proposition was on the benches opposite, an hon. Member who later became a junior Minister?
Is it not clear that we have played our part? Hon. Members will remember the late Member for West Lothian, a well-loved Member on this side and the other side of the Committee, who did an enormous amount of work to convince the Board of Trade that a large industry, such as the British Motor Corporation, should go to West Lothian. Is it right for the hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire to say that the Committee is divided between hon. Members on this side who run down Scotland and hon. Members opposite who praise it? His speech was enormously unfair.
If the Government have acted to bring large sections of industry to Scotland, it has been because of pressure from hon. Members on both sides of the Committee, and certainly on this side. We would have been a bad Opposition if we had not pointed out to the Government the error of their ways, their mistakes and the inadequacies of their programmes. That is what an Opposition is for and it is the duty of hon. Members supporting the Government to agree with the Opposition whenever the case allows that it is possible.
I called the speech of the hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty progressive. I said that because, having studied the problems of the Highlands as he has, having been a Member for nearly 20 years, he has concluded that there is great merit in the proposal to set up a Highland development authority. Hon. Members on this side of the Committee have advocated that for many years. It was in our programme in 1958—"Let Scotland Prosper"—which was produced for the election of 1959. The hon. Member was then armed with a different manifesto. Perhaps he will urge his own party to include this proposal in its own manifesto for the next election. We have put forward suggestion after suggestion about what should be done.
Between 1955 and 1959, the hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire was the Member for Lancaster. We never saw him at Scottish debates in those days, even though he was a Scotsman. I do not rebuke him strongly for that, but perhaps we should rebuke him for not remembering what happened in those years. In all those years until 1959, hon. Members opposite rigorously argued against the concept of advance factories. It was only in the debate of 1959 that the Minister reluctantly announced that there were to be three advance factories—one for Wales, one on Merseyside for England, and one for Scotland. Dolefully he said that the Government could not guarantee to get tenants for them.
Under pressure from us over all these years, the right hon. Gentleman today announced that there are 23 advance factories promised, including 12 building and nine allocated to tenants. That is proof of the argument for advance factories. But we advocated advance factory building not only in "Signposts for Scotland" in 1963 and now but in "Let Scotland Prosper" in 1959. The Government have not had a single advance factory left on their hands so far. Why do they not speed up this development? When he deals with West Renfrewshire, the Secretary of State will undoubtedly take credit for the building of an advance factory in that area. But it will provide only 20 jobs in a district where there are over 2,000 unemployed. We are grateful for small mercies, but it is not much.
That factory already has an intending tenant before its building is completed. Next to it there are about 18 acres which the Government promised to buy in 1961. It took them nearly two years to do so after they had made their promise with a great flourish of trumpets. It has taken the Government until now to lay out the ground for factory building. Areas like this all over Scotland could be used for the building of advance factories to expand our industrial capacity.
No doubt the Minister will announce tonight that a number of acres of derelict land have been cleared under Sections 4 and 5 of the Local Employment Act. If my hon. Friend the Member for Bute and North Ayrshire were here, I would point out that we have constantly nagged Ministers for not having done enough in this matter. If hon. Members opposite do not like that, let me read the Minister's report, published last month, which says:
There is estimated to be about 15,000 acres of derelict land in Central Scotland and very little impression has been made on this by the clearance operations so far undertaken.
No matter what the Minister says about the clearance of this land, let no one be deceived into thinking that more than a small impression has been made on this immense problem.
In my constituency, which we are trying to make attractive to incoming industrialists, we have derelict land which we are anxious to have cleared. The Minister is giving us little effective help in getting our application accepted by the Board of Trade and by the Scottish Office. I have raised this matter before, and been told that there are a number of difficulties, including legal difficulties over the definition in Scottish law of the word "derelict ". If there is this legal difficulty, I am sure that the Government could resolve it by bringing in a short Bill to deal with it. After all, they are very experienced in bringing in Bills at the last minute. It could probably be done by bringing in a Private Member's Bill next week. The Malta Independence Bill is an example of how quickly the Government can act when they want to. If the difficulty to which I have referred is the main obstacle to helping us, the Government could bring in a Bill to deal with it, and I am sure that my hon. Friends would facilitate its passage to enable us to speed up the clearance of derelict land.
My hon. Friend the Member for Fife, West (Mr. W. Hamilton) talked about I.D.C.s. I raised this matter with the late hon. Member for Rutherglen (Mr. Brooman-White) when he was Under-Secretary of State for Scotland. He went into the matter pretty thoroughly, but in the end he produced an answer which was unsatisfactory to us both. When an I.D.C. is issued, there ought to be a follow-up by the Ministry of Labour. When my hon. Friend talked about quarterly returns, the Minister gave a most unsatisfactory reply. He said that he could not issue quarterly returns on the outcome of I.D.Cs. because it was administratively difficult, rum-te-tum, and so on.
If a certificate is issued on a certain date saying that a certain firm is being given a Government grant of a certain amount, or Government assistance, or even permission to build, and it will as a consequence provide, say, 800 jobs, it seems reasonable that a definite time should be set for the firm to lodge a consequential certificate with the Ministry of Labour or Board of Trade saying that it has completed its work, and that as a result fortunately or unfortunately as the case may be, it is above or below the anticipated figure by a certain number.
If that were done we could measure pipeline promises against reality. We have all been deceived by talk about pipelines, not so much because the Government want to deceive us—I am sure that hon. Gentlemen opposite would love to see the jobs which they have promised come into being—but because, by hoping this and believing that and never checking on what has in fact happened, the problem has remained unsolved. I put it to the Minister that it is still fair criticism that unless they are able to show not only the House but the people outside that they are keeping their promises, not for party reasons but for the purpose of trying to solve this problem, those people will never be satisfied that politicians' promises mean something. If the British people are wise enough to elect us to power in October, I hope that we will observe the recommendations of the Select Committee on this matter.
I deal next with shipbuilding and docks. The Minister gave me the sad impression this afternoon—and I must say that he re-echoed the opinion of the Minister of Transport—that decaying, dying and contracting industries are pretty well written off. As the representative of a community which is dependent on one of these industries, I resent this, because shipbuilding is not a dying industry. It is still an industry of the future. In fact, if we had a nuclear vessel afloat we might be in the forefront in the building of ships of the future, as we were when we were responsible for the early development of steam. We snatched the initiative from other nations and became a great shipbuilding Power because we saw the potential of steam. The same could be true of nuclear vessels. We are still waiting for the Government to announce whether they propose to build a nuclear ship. My information is that they do not intend to do so. We shall know next Thursday.
I ask the Committee to remember that the Government have been discussing the building of a nuclear ship since 1958. There have been innumerable reports from committees which I shall not name. We have gone on and on through the Admiralty, through the Minister of Transport, through the Atomic Energy Authority, and through the Lord President of the Council and Secretary of State for Education and Science. We have got nowhere. If we had invested in marine shipbuilding, with nuclear propulsion as its main basis, we would be far ahead of other nations and we would be getting the orders that we need because of the many shipyards which have been closed in recent years.
The right hon. Gentleman draws consolation from the fact that contraction in shipbuilding has stopped, but he is deceiving himself. The Shipbuilding Credit Bill is the sole reason why we have been able to get so many orders. The last of these orders will be completed by next May. In fact, the industry had taken up the money before the House passed the Bill authorising the spending of £75 million for this purpose. The Minister said that after this money had been spent the industry would contract "to its right size and shape". That does not mean to the size and shape recommended by N.E.D.C., which has said that a live and viable industry is an essential component in the industrial fabric of this country. This is where the Government have made a grave error in their industrial calculations. I think that it was Disraeli who said that the Conservatives represented the party of reform; they favour the last reform, but not the next one. The same is true of the Conservatives today. Only recently they have been converted to planning, but they have not accepted it wholeheartedly. They favour regional planning, but not national planning.
Much the same comment applies to their attitude to public investment. They have only half accepted the new concept of public investment, which we must have if we are to prosper. Apparently there are no great private captains of industry left today. The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport, good Conservative that he is, wise vice-admiral that he is, lamented the fact that there was no great captain of industry who would come forward to build the ships of the future. The Government have to provide the money, and this is the tragedy of private enterprise today. It must turn to the Government for money. We are more modern than the party opposite, because we understand and accept that there has to be investment of this kind. We say that if there is investment of this kind it should be with complete public participation with no doctrinaire fear of Government association with these investment programmes. Let us do justice to private enterprise, but let us at the same time do justice to the public purse.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond) made one of the best speeches that I have ever heard him deliver in this House. The hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire referred to the right hon. Gentleman as a shadow Scottish Secretary of State. Who knows?—there have been many more conversions since Saul went on the road to Damascus. In his excellent speech the right hon. Gentleman pointed out the problem of docking in the Port of Leith. It is true. My hon. Friend the Member for Edinburgh, Leith (Mr. Hoy) has argued this case solidly at Question Time, in the Standing Committee on the Harbours Bill and elsewhere. Even now he has not succeeded in getting approval of the necessary investment of £4 million in the Leith Docks to do what the right hon. Gentleman has suggested was long overdue. Of course, it is in the White Paper as a possibility, a consideration, a "perhaps", but it has not been done. The same consideration applies to the Clyde.
Some friends of mine from Greenock are coming here next week to meet Lord Rochdale, and we hope to persuade him that there should be large-scale public investment in the river. Under the Harbours Bill £100 million was set aside to achieve this, but it is not enough for the entire United Kingdom. We pointed this out in Committee on the Harbours Bill. If all the rivers in Britain received their essential amount of investment we should need far more than £100 million.
If there is to be a scramble for this money it is important that the Scottish Ministers should be fully alive to see that a proper share is given in respect not only of the Clyde but of the Forth. If they can do that they will have earned our gratitude in history. They will have done a little to help Scotland, but we, of course, will still have to do the larger part of the work in order to finish the job.
I have followed the hon. Member for Greenock (Dr. Dickson Mabon) in debate on previous occasions. Today, I am inclined to be sympathetic to him. I know something of his problem. It was my privilege and duty to serve in Greenock for a year or so during the war. But I hope that the Committee will excuse me if I do not follow his speech in detail. I want to refer to some of the problems in my three counties—and they are not all the same problems.
I agree with the hon. Member in what he said in congratulating my hon. Friend the Member for Ross and Cromarty (Sir J. MacLeod) for being in harmony with hon. Members opposite. All of us who think deeply about employment, unemployment, depopulation and all those matters which affect the people of Scotland, come to this Committee basically with the idea of thinking and speaking in a way which will do good and help to resolve the problems of unemployment and depopulation. Although at this time we are tempted to introduce party matters into our discussions it is not my intention to do so today. I shall not speak at great length, because I know that hon. Members wish to take part in the debate.
I want to refer to the remarks made by the hon. Member for Greenock and the hon. Member for Fife, West (Mr. W. Hamilton) about an overall plan. I think that all hon. Members are happy to have seen the plan that has evolved from the Central Scotland development. I am happy that a study is going on in the South-East—in my three counties and the adjacent counties—to see what needs to be done to check depopulation and to increase the productivity of the mills and the conditions in which the people live in my constituency and the three adjacent counties.
I do not wish to reiterate anything that I said some months ago in an Adjournment debate. I want to point out that as late as yesterday I put a Question to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State asking
what progress is being made by his Department in investigating the conditions relating to the depopulation in the Border counties and the South-East of Scotland generally; and if he will make an interim statement.
I was delighted to have his Answer, which, I hope, is an aurgury for the future. He said:
Since my hon. and gallant Friend was given an account of this study in the Adjournment debate on 23rd March, a great deal of detailed work has been carried out on the potential of the different parts of the Borders for physical development, and on studies of migration trends and population structure.
This is most helpful. I am glad to know that these investigations have gone forward so quickly.
My right hon. Friend also said:
We have also had most helpful discussions with the tweed industry which have led us to a much better understanding of their labour requirements; similar discussions with the knitwear industry are in progress. On the rather different problems of the eastern part of the area "—
referring in the main to Berwickshire and East Lothian, and not my constituency—
which arise on both sides of the Border, liaison has been established with the North East Development Group.
The Committee will agree that this is a good and healthy thing. The North East Development Group has problems which are common to ours over the Border and it is good that a relationship should be established between these two development groups:
special attention is being given to the forward requirements of the agricultural industry and the difficulties of the small country towns.
I hope that before long this will conduce to a situation where we will have what has been needed in the Borders for at least 25 years, namely, the establishment of new, male-employing light industries. There has been a steady and almost continuous depopulation of approximately half of 1 per cent. a year. In some parts it has been a little higher, and it has varied between one county and another from year to year.
In the Border burghs—and I have eight, of which six are all tweed, hosiery and knitwear towns—there is no unemployment. In fact, there are not enough people to fill the jobs. This is particularly true of female labour. I have had to say it before, but it bears repetition, being based on the truth: all the towns in my three counties are desperately in need of further female help to operate the looms in the mills. It is a well-known fact that the tweed producing, hosiery and knitwear industries of the Borders of Scotland, ever since the war, have been one of the main per capita earners of dollars for Britain.
It is a sorry thing to go into the mills and to see how desperate is the need in some of them. Last September, I visited 60 or more mills in my three counties. There was one medium-sized mill which, the week before, had turned down an order from a London firm for 2,000 fully-fashioned cashmere knitwear garments, and the day before that had turned down an order for 1,000. Three months before it had turned down orders from Oslo alone for 10,000 magnificent garments. The only reason for these orders being turned down was that there was not sufficient girls and young women to man the looms. If we had 500 women available in the town of Hawick alone, tomorrow morning they would all be absorbed into the mills by lunchtime.
That is the situation in the Borders. That is why I was glad to have the assurance that this study is being carried out with a sense of urgency. I do not see why the hon. Member for Edinburgh, East (Mr. Willis) should laugh.
Surely the hon. Member knows better than anyone else that these problems of the Borders have been known for 10 or 12 years. I ventured to smile when the hon. and gallant Member spoke of urgency. Everyone knows that this survey should have been carried out 10 years ago.
I do not dissent from that. I have been urging urgency—if I may put it that way. I do not take it well when the hon. Member laughs about it. I have not sat back and done nothing. I have been trying to get something like this done for years. The hon. Member is in agreement with me on this. I am merely expressing my delight that this is happening now, and I hope that, if anything, I can urge it to happen even more quickly.
I would like to see the most stricken of all my towns, and the one that is really in difficulties—Jedburgh—receiving further assistance. Those who know the Borders know that we have one up-to-date local factory in Jedburgh—the Starrett Company Limited—which employs about 250 people. This factory is prepared to expand to a point where it will employ 1,100 people, which would put an immediate strain on Jedburgh's housing situation. The town council would be willing to build the houses, and it has the land on which to do it.
It is not for my right hon. Friend to answer this point, but what is tying up this further expansion is difficulty with the Treasury in relation to a certain amount of taxation on machines which have to come into this country and which would be in competition with those manufactured by one or two companies south of the Border. I hope that this problem will be happily resolved at a meeting to take place in the not-distant future between one of the Treasury Ministers and the managing director of that company, who, with his secretary, will come to the meeting.
All this will be aided by this study and what I hope will be a quick application of what is found in the research being made. If this is done as quickly and effectively as in the central belt of Scotland, we shall see the plan for Scotland appearing from what seem to be the pieces of a crossword puzzle and that what has been done is worth while and helpful. I do not want to wait any further for an improvement in the situation in the Borders and I should like some action taken to stop the depopulation.
This has some effect on the employment and housing situation in Glasgow, for every one of the Border burghs has an overspill agreement with Glasgow. Hawick is pressing hard to attract families from Glasgow because the women are needed in the mills. There is a difficulty in attracting families from Glasgow overspill when there are few jobs for the men and yet there are any number of jobs for the women.
I am receiving a great deal of help in this matter from my hon. Friend the Member for Glasgow, Kelvingrove (Mr. Lilley), who, in his "surgery", asks people whether they want to go to live in the Borders. We have much correspondence. I put it to the Town Clerk of Hawick, who deals with the local exchange, and they then work back to Glasgow. A number of families have already come to Hawick and are happy to be there. The firms are delighted to have the women working in the mills. So far, we have also provided 20 to 30 jobs for men from Glasgow.
This is just a beginning. We need more co-operation from Glasgow business elements, as I am the first to admit. Galashiels has had a few of these people and Peebles has had a few. This is the beginning, but we need a number of not-too-large, light industries employing male labour. It is not enough that people should be exported from Glasgow to help Glasgow with its housing problem. If they are to go to the Borders there must be an export not just of people, but also of some light industries to go with them. The housing problems in the Borders can be solved. All the burghs are prepared to deal with them. Selkirk and Galashiels are building houses, and all the other burghs are prepared to build them. We need a little more co-operation with some of the Glasgow business elements.
A number of factories are being pulled down in the redevelopment of Glasgow. Gorbals is one of two areas in particular where this is happening. My hon. Friend the Member for Kelvin-grove and I have been trying to induce those people whose factories in Glasgow are to be demolished not to move to an area within the greater perimeter of Glasgow, but to move straight away to the Borders. Under the overspill arrangements between Hawick, Jedburgh, Selkirk, or any of the other Border burghs, the factories, when established there, will attract the same financial benefits as if they went to a development area—which, of course, in the Borders we are not.
All these things come within the compass of the study which I am glad to say my right hon. Friend's Department is urgently carrying out. I trust that this will be of benefit not only to the people and burghs in the Borders in order to stop the depopulation, but also in the decanting of people from Glasgow, many of whom would like to get into the countryside if they could find a proper environment in which to live and jobs for the men of the families. This would be good both for east and for west. This is the sort of co-operation in which I believe, just as I believe in co-operation across this Committee when we are dealing with human affairs—the problems of people who need jobs and of places where the jobs are available, but the people are not there to fill them.
Listening to the whole of this debate I have been forcibly struck by the fact that no Member from the Government benches has painted as rosy a picture of the situation which prevails in Scotland as that painted by the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade. It seems that the further one is from Scotland the more one sees the many things which are supposed to have been carried out in Scotland. All hon. Members who have spoken since the Minister have their residences in Scotland and each has been to a great degree pessimistic in his outlook. No hon. Member can be at all satisfied with the progress which has been made in Scotland although we all recognise that a certain amount of progress has been made.
I have listened not only to this debate but to yesterday's debate. One statement which struck me forcibly yesterday was that the standard of living of the people of Germany exceeds the standard of living of the people of this country. If that is taken to mean an average of the working people of this country, it must be borne in mind that the average in England is very much higher than the average in Scotland. This means that the standard of living of the Scottish working people is very far below that of the German people. This cannot be a happy state of affairs, and it must give rise to some hardship and give some room for concern. Notwithstanding the progress which has been made, it has not been sufficient to keep the standard of living of the people of Scotland even on a par with that of the people of England and it has fallen far short of the standard of living in Germany.
I had hoped to say a few words about the health of our people because the standard of living and the type of work in which they are employed, and whether they are unemployed or not, has a bearing on their health. This afternoon we are discussing large Votes for Health, and yet I remind the Committee of the simple fact that the hospitals and health services of Scotland have not progressed to the same extent over the last 10 or 12 years as have he hospitals and health services of England. The infant mortality rate in Scotland is still very much higher than that in England.
I will not weary the Committee by going into detail, nor have I time to do so, but it has been suggested by some hon. Members opposite that agriculture is a very prosperous industry. It is certainly more prosperous than it was 12 or 18 months ago, but we must recognise that the recent Price Review had its eye on the forthcoming General Election, and yet it has not done for the Scottish farmer that which we all want to see done—give him a sense of security. There is great doubt in the minds of the Scottish farming community about future prospects. When they look at the Agriculture and Horticulture Act, 1964, they wonder what type of Government we have, when it is stipulated in the Act that we shall be prepared from time to time to import cereals from other parts of the world but that their prices must reach the price levels prevailing in this country. Last year we were buying wheat and barley at between 14s. and 23s. a cwt. The prevailing price in this country is about 28s. a cwt. By this Act" we tell foreigners, "Provided that you increase the price of barley or wheat to the price prevailing in this country, we will be prepared to purchase it". That has not given any degree of satisfaction or confidence to agricultural workers or agriculturists in Scotland.
Comparisons are often made with what was done by the Labour Government. There can be no doubt that the agricultural policy followed by the Labour Government brought about security for the farming community which we all so much desired. It is only since the present Government came to power that that security and the feeling that we were going some place in an agricultural sense has been wiped out, with the exception of the last Price Review which was an election stunt.
I do not want to go into the details of the various Agriculture Acts, but it is true that most of the farming community are now beginning to wonder what will be the future policy of the Conservatives. The question is: will they produce any new scheme for the farming community? There is no doubt that it is absolutely essential that some degree of security be established in agriculture. We have not as yet had produced for our consideration a proper marketing scheme for beef cattle and sheep. Even the last Act did not give us any help in that respect. It is true that any Government who may come to power must try to safeguard our producers. They must also safeguard the consumers. Up to the moment, this has not been done. Very soon some Government will have to review the whole question of agricultural subsidies and put them on a sound business footing. What is needed is a new approach to agriculture in Scotland as compared to that south of the Border.
The hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire (Sir F. Maclean) referred to the tourist industry. This is indeed a most important industry for Scotland. Only a few months ago the Secretary of State for Scotland introduced a Bill in the Scottish Grand Committee with the sole purpose of imposing a levy upon Scottish hoteliers as against English hoteliers. It is true that, owing to public pressure, the Secretary of State was forced to withdraw the Bill. However, it showed that the Government do not know the road they seek to travel. It makes one wonder how stupid they can become. It was said that it was only a small tax which was being put upon Scottish hoteliers, but no large tax has been imposed by any Chancellor of the Exchequer which did not start on the basis of being a small tax. The small tax which the Secretary of State for Scotland suggested for the Scottish tourist industry would soon have become a very large tax.
I should like to have spoken about education and the fact that the new university is to be sited in Stirling. I heartily concur with that decision. I believe that Stirling is the proper place for the university. I am sorry to hear that even the Secretary of State was not too keen on it coming to Stirling. I give the decision a very hearty welcome.
We have heard a great deal in the debate about industry. It is my opinion, for what it is worth, that Scotland is becoming too dependent upon large outside industrial undertakings. So many of the new factories are being taken up by organisations from outside. If there should be a trade recession in future, as there could well be, undoubtedly the full effects of that recession will be felt in Scotland before they are felt anywhere else. This is a very important aspect of our deliberations.
I am greatly disturbed about the Board of Trade's attitude when small local industrialists seek its assistance to expand or build new small factories. The approach of the Board of Trade to local industrialists in Scotland is far from helpful. I am of the opinion that the Board of Trade would much rather encourage foreign capital to come to Scotland than help local people establish industries there. I have had some experience of this. I know how difficult it is to get any progress when approaching the Board of Trade on this subject.
We have heard about the many research and development bodies connected with the nationalised industries which are situated in London. So it is with the Board of Trade. If it is desired to establish a factory or extend a factory in Scotland, it is necessary to come to the Board of Trade in London. This is most unsatisfactory.
Yesterday I spoke to the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade privately about the position prevailing in my own constituency in Kilsyth and Lennox-town and across the Border in Dunbartonshire in Croy and Twechar. All the pits in that area have gone out of existence, yet there is no sign of any industry being allocated to the areas. I should like the Secretary of State for Scotland to give me some assistance in this and press the Board of Trade to establish an advance factory in the Kilsyth area so as to take up the slack caused by the closure of all the pits.
I also discussed with the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade the problems of Bannockburn, Cowie, Fallin and Plean. This is a whole group of small communities. These villages have been rebuilt by the county council, with the encouragement of the National Coal Board, which told the county council clearly that it had expected the coal supplies in the areas to go on for an indefinite period. These villages, at great cost to the county council, have been completely rebuilt. As the local authority has gone to all that trouble and expense, one reasonable and sensible thing to do would be to try to establish a small industrial estate in the area so as to keep the villagers in those places I have mentioned happy and reasonably contented.
This follows what the hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty (Sir John MacLeod) said about the Report of the Cairncross Committee, before which I had the privilege to give evidence. The evidence I gave on behalf of the County Councils Association was that the Local Employment Act should be extended to the whole of Scotland. It is wrong to base the whole expansion of Scotland upon certain areas of expansion. We are doing more than a disservice to our country if we do not recognise that there is a great wealth of good labour, which gives of its best if small factories are built within a small community. I have had ample experience of this. I implore the Secretary of State for Scotland to use his good offices to try to do as I have suggested, to get small industries established in small towns and villages in Scotland, many of which I represent. This would instil a better feeling into employees—a pride of place, a pride in their industry, which is a very important thing to have.
Time does not permit me to develop many of the points I wanted to adduce. I would have liked to refer in detail to the building industry, in which I have a personal interest. I believe that that industry has years of expansion before it, but it must have a different method of contracting. It cannot continue with the present degree of uncertainty, and when the hon. Member for Bute and North Ayrshire spoke about purchasing goods from America, he was not being anti-American, for it is not always a question of wanting to buy American. Only a month ago I bought an American machine valued at more than £7,000, simply because it was the machine to do the job. We are not anti-American but pro-British, particularly pro-Scotland.
It is obvious that no building contractor can look to the future with any degree of certainty until we have a different system of contracting, along with continuity of employment for those in the building industry. This applies equally to civil engineering. The present method of contracting and the utilisation of the various Scottish firms can be organised in a more satisfactory way only if the present contractual system is based on a new system of contracting.
My notes contain many other items of importance, but I regret that time does not enable me to refer to them. However, I must say that unless we have in Scotland a different fiscal system for the whole of the country, along with a different local system of taxation for different industries—and not that which the legislation passed in this House compels us to have—the problems of Scotland will never be solved. It is indefensible, for example, that Scottish industrialists should have to pay more for coal than their opposite numbers south of the Border. This and other things prove that we begin with a serious disadvantage.
I say with all the sincerity at my command that the little flurry of excitement and progress we are now seeing does not have its roots deep in the soil of permanency. We will bring a permanent solution to the problems of Scotland only if we recognise that the fiscal system of the country should be based on a different system from that operating in England generally. So must the political control of the affairs of Scotland be changed.
I regret the necessity to repeat that time prevents me from developing my argument. I do not know the exact method by which speakers are selected in the House of Commons, but I am more than disturbed by the fact that since the beginning of this Session this is the first time I have had the privilege to be called to take part in our deliberations, and this only a short while before the winding up speeches are due to be made. I consider that something should be done to alter not the salaries of hon. Members, but the procedure of Parliament.
If this is not done, if the whole set-up of Parliament is not altered to give Scotland a better share of the time available so that hon. Members who represent Scottish constituencies can exercise their responsibilities, both financially and politically, the whole democratic system of this country will go to rack and ruin.
We have had a very good debate today. It has, in some respects, been similar to former debates. The opening speech from this side of the Committee was properly used to examine the record of the Government, remembering that it is a parliamentary tradition that on Supply days, when we are voting money, the Opposition take the opportunity to examine the Government's record.
This inevitably means that the Opposition will be somewhat destructive in their approach. It is the job of the Opposition to be destructive of policies being administered by the Government, when the Opposition disagree with those policies. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade will soon have the privilege of making a similarly destructive speech from this side of the Committee.
We then had the Secretary of State bemoaning the fact that the Opposition spokesman, when initiating the debate, had not been more constructive. The right hon. Gentleman proceeded to provide the Committee with a few carefully selected figures to show that everything in the garden was lovely and that there was nothing to worry about. This has been going on every year for the last 13 years. Ministers have spoken from the Dispatch Box in every one of these debates during that time saying exactly the same thing; that the Opposition are too much aware of the dark clouds overhead and are not aware of the silver lining. Time and again we have been told that everything will be all right tomorrow. Always right hon. Gentlemen opposite admit that things are difficult now, but say that we must wait a little while until their plans unwind. Well, the plans have unwound, and things are very far from being all right.
One of the notable changes over the years is that we are all planners now. Today, we have listened to the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade telling us in very considerable detail how many people will be living in the South-East in 1984, where they will come from, what will be the natural increase of the population already in the area, the number of additional immigrants who will live in the area, the number of people living elsewhere in the country who will retire to the South-East, and the number who will be drawn from the North and from Scotland.
We had the whole thing all carefully worked out—or was it? Was it really worked out? If it was worked out and carefully calculated, the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for Scotland will be able to tell us what will be the loss of population in Scotland as a result of migration over the next 20 years. He will not, of course, be able to do anything of the kind.
The Secretary of State for Industry and Trade also told us that the Government could not direct the amount of industrial activity in any part of the country unless there was direction of industry—so he said. So the Government could only create the conditions and provide the necessary inducements in the hope that industry would go where the Government wanted it to go. But if industry does not go—what then? Nothing.
We have heard again today, as is understandable, the story of the stripmill—but not so much the story of the stripmill as the claim that its establishment was due to the policy, the foresight, the imagination and the administration of the present Government. We have also heard of the motor car industry, of the Rootes and B.M.C. products that came later, of the pulp mill and the Post Office Savings Bank—the lot.
On this occasion my mind goes back to a similar debate seven years ago. It was my privilege in 1957 to initiate that debate from this side of the Committee. I then had the temerity to make the case for a steel stripmill, saying that we could not get our share of the motor car industry, or of the durable consumer goods industry generally unless we first got a stripmill. Who opposed me? The authentic voice of Toryism in Scotland, the hon. Member for Glasgow, Pollok- (Sir J. George)—the Chairman of the Tory Party in Scotland. He said that I was talking nonsense, and on that occasion declared from the benches opposite that we could not have a stripmill in Scotland.
Incidentally, on the following day I was accused in the Scotsman and the Glasgow Herald, by a leading industrialist in a letter to those newspapers, of having talked a lot of nonsense about the possibility of the stripmill. Who was the industrialist? He was the chairman of Colvilles. He said that it was an impracticability, and that anyone who talked about developing a stripmill in Scotland was talking through his hat and without knowledge of the steel industry.
In due course, Colvilles was obliged, or encouraged, or induced, or cajoled, or bribed to build a stripmill. If Colvilles had not agreed to build the stripmill, would it never have been built? Is it not possible that even a Tory Cabinet appreciated that a stripmill was essential to Scotland's social and economic future, and said to Colvilles, "If you do not do it, we will have to ask Richard Thomas and Baldwins to develop in Scotland "? Is it not possible that the chairman of Colvilles was faced with a choice of building the stripmill himself with £50 million of public money or permitting an extension of steel industry nationalisation in Scotland?
In any case, let me make the position absolutely clear. When a Labour Government decides that a project of this sort—and it does not have to be just steel nationalisation—is essential to the well-being of any part of Scotland, let alone the whole of Scotland, and private industry is not willing to go along and do the job, we will not shrink from employing public enterprise to do that which the needs of the community require to be done.
We had a debate on forestry in the Scottish Grand Committee today, in which the Secretary of State for Scotland said that he could recall former speeches on forestry in debates in the House and in Committee. There was only one previously in the Scottish Grand Committee and that was in 1959. The right hon. Gentleman will remember that on that occasion it was the Opposition who were arguing for the construction of a pulp mill in the North of Scotland. He will remember very well that we were not concerned, as we made it clear, whether the pulp mill was built by private or public enterprise. We said that the surplus timber was there and that the best possible expert advice we had was to go ahead with the building of a pulp mill in the near future, and not only one but perhaps two.
Again, there were considerable vested interests in the country against the construction of a pulp mill, but in due course we had the Act on the Statute Book and the Wiggins Teape pulp and paper integrated mill was got under way with £10 million of taxpapers' money behind it. If Wiggins Teape had not been willing to accept the £10 million, plus about another £3 million, to build the project would Scotland just have had to do without the mill? Are the Tories telling us that if private enterprise cannot be induced to do a job we must do without the job? This was not what was said about the Highlands shipping service. Private enterprise would not, or could not, do the job and therefore the State did it, and very sensibly the then Secretary of State for Scotland, Mr. Maclay, as he then was, took the decision.
We appreciate that over the years the Government have had at their disposal the powers of the Distribution of Industry Act, 1945, until they reproduced the provisions of that Act, a little weakened, in a new Measure which they called the Local Employment Act, 1960. We appreciate that they defined more strictly the powers of that Act in the Local Employment Act, 1963. We appreciate the free depreciation provisions of the Finance Act, 1963. None of us has ever said that the Government did not have the power or had done nothing in the past 13 years. What we have said over and over again is that the Government have never used the powers that they had fully and adequately.
We have charged them with failing to mobilise the material and manpower resources of the nation. That is the charge that we level against the Tory Government. That is the charge on which the electors of Scotland have already found the Tory Party guilty, and that is the charge on which the Tory Party will be found guilty as soon as the electors in Scotland are given the opportunity once again to give their verdict.
So many hon. Members have said during the course of the debate that it is pointless to have regional plans without a national plan that I hesitate to repeat it. It seems to me to be so obvious that one wonders how any Government could be so foolish as to pretend that one can have study groups studying the conditions in separate regions of the country and that each study group will produce a regional plan which, when they are all put together, will create one national plan. Is this really what we are expected to believe?
The Secretary of State for Industry and Trade this afternoon paid some tribute to the Scottish Council. The Scottish Council had something to say about the folly of producing regional plans without there being any national plan. Incidentally, where are the Tories now?
The Scottish Council, over the years, has gradually come round to the acceptance of and the advocacy of the policies which we have been urging from this Box. When one gets support for one's advocacy from a body like the Scottish Council one is grateful.
In the conclusion to its Report which it issued on 24th April it said:
Two things are missing. The plans which have so far been published are concerned with public investment and with land use. They lack any industrial analysis or content, and as a result they lack the essential component which alone will spread the continuing growth of industry sufficiently evenly over the principal industrial areas of Britain. In addition, the general pattern of which the individual plans are part must be made available if conflicts are to be avoided and priorities to be maintained. Without these elements, implementation of the plans will do Scotland and other areas of Britain more harm than good. With them, the plans would hold out the prospect of a far stronger Britain, with the sort of employment opportunities in Scotland and other areas that we want for all sections of the community.
The same sort of case was made by the Scottish branch of the Town and Country Planning Association. In its report to Her Majesty's Government it supported the policy that we on these benches have been advocating. I should have thought it was so obvious that it scarcely needed saying that the carrying into effect of the South-East plan is bound to be detrimental to the attraction of sufficient industry to Scotland to solve the problem of
unemployment and to provide opportunities for our young people.
I took the opportunity of saying this in the debate on 19th March, the day on which the South-East plan was produced. I tell the right hon. Gentleman that it does something to satisfy one's vanity that Buchanan, the Scottish Council, the Scottish branch of the Town and Country Planning Association and every responsible body which has been able to examine the Scottish, the North-East and the South-East plans objectively have come to the same conclusion as that which I voiced in the debate on 19th March.
There were a great many things I wanted to say, and I find that I have not enough time to make the speech which I could make. Indeed, I feel that I have hardly got started. I turn now to the speech of the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade, who waxed eloquent about the plans for Central Scotland and the North-East, saying that the Government were seeking to rehabilitate the growth areas. This, he said, was the industrial content of the White Papers. [HON. MEMBERS: "Where is he?"] I do not know where the right hon. Gentleman went after he made his speech. I heard some of my hon. Friends, a few moments ago, asking where all the Tories had gone. I am wondering why the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade has not been here.
The right hon. Gentleman waxed eloquent about what was being done in the clearing of derelict sites. Does the Secretary of State for Scotland recall that, between 1945 and 1951, great encouragment was given by the Labour Government to the clearing of derelict sites and in many cases the work was undertaken by the Board of Trade direct? When it was undertaken by the local authorities, the Labour Government accepted that it was work being done by them on behalf of the community as a whole and, therefore, 100 per cent. grants were given. I wonder whether the Committee fully realises that in May, 1952, six months after the Tories came to power, all grants for the clearing of derelict sites were stopped and no more were given for many years.
The Tory Government withheld grants for which provision was made in the 1945 Act, grants which were given by the Labour Government between 1945 and 1951, for the improvement of basic services. The Tory Government would not do it for 10 years. Now, they have suddenly discovered that those areas which suffer heavy unemployment, the ones now described as growth areas, very badly want to be rehabilitated, and this, we are told, is the whole object of the White Paper on Central Scotland.
The Secretary of State for Industry and Trade told us about great plans for public investment. I find it very difficult to discuss this part of the right hon. Gentleman's speech without using language which you, Sir Robert, would immediately call upon me to withdraw. This White Paper is a fraud. The right hon. Gentleman told us about public investment in Central Scotland and the North-East and compared it with public investment in Britain as a whole, the idea being that those two areas were getting a great advantage. He referred to roads, schools, housing, and so on. I interrupted to make a point about housing, and the Secretary of State for Scotland knows perfectly well that it was a valid point. His White Paper on Central Scotland has done nothing to stimulate the improvement of the infrastructure or the provision of the basic services in the area.
If we turn to the White Paper on Public Investment, Cmnd. 2177, what do we find? The amount to be spent on roads in Scotland in 1963–64, that is, last year, was £17·5 million. It is to go up in 1964–65 to £18·1 million, an increase of £600,000. In the same period, 1963–64, public investment in England and Wales was £123·3 million. The estimated expenditure this year, 1964–65, is £145·2 million, an increase of £22 million compared with an increase of £600,000 in Scotland; and the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade stood at that Box today and pretended to the Committee and to the country that the Government had taken new powers to stimulate public investment in Scotland and the North-East. What he said was the opposite of the truth.
The Secretary of State also mentioned expenditure on education. In 1963–64, the total expenditure on schools in Scotland was £15·9 million. The total investment provided for in the White Paper in 1964–65 is £14·3 million—a drop of £1·6 million. Is this stimulating investment and the development of the basic services? Is this encouraging the development of the infrastructure to make areas more attractive to incoming industry?
The other element was housing. In 1962–63, the expenditure on local authority housing, new towns, and the Scottish Special Housing Association was £54·9 million. In 1963–64 it went up to £70·1 million. This was before the publication of the White Paper on Central Scotland. The estimate for 1964–65 is £701 million—no change at all. The Secretary of State for Scotland will not be able to tell us of a single thing which he and his Development Group, or any other group, have done to stimulate local authorities in Central Scotland into building more houses. Yet this is the only part of the infrastructure in which there has been an increase, and it took place before the publication of the White Paper.
The White Paper was a fraud.
We have heard a lot about the reduction in the unemployment figures. The reduction is always compared with the position in 1963, which was the only year since the war when the average monthly figure was well over 100,000. My hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross) compared the situation with 1951, which is a fair comparison. To that the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade had nothing to say. Incidentally, according to the latest figures available to us, those for mid-June, Scotland, with 70,617 people out of work, has 22 per cent. of Britain's unemployed. I want the Secretary of State to bear that figure in mind.
To what extent is the improvement in the unemployment situation due to migration? The Secretary of State had something to say—and it was quoted by my hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock this afternoon—about the effect of the net loss of younger people in Scotland. We have heard a lot from industrialists in Scotland about the shortage of skilled labour. As my hon. Friends have been saying, "Where have all the Tories. gone?", we might well ask," Where have all the young men in Scotland gone? Where have all the skilled men gone?" They have gone to other parts of Britain and of the world in which there are job opportunities.
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Labour gave me a Written Answer to a Question on 15th June, just over a month ago, when he told me that between mid-1951 and mid-1963 the estimated number of men and boys in employment in Scotland decreased by 33,000 and increased in Britain by 929,000. Will the Secretary of State tell us whether he knows of another industrial country with such a miserable record? Does the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade know of another country with such a miserable record? [Interruption.] Does the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade say "Nonsense"? It was his hon. Friend sitting next to him, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Labour, who gave me the figures. Are the figures nonsense? I took it that the hon. Gentleman gave me correct figures and that the number of men and boys in employment in Scotland is fewer than the number 13 years ago, when the Tories took over.
I repeat the question: is there another industrial country with such a miserable record?
I have said that Scotland had 22 per cent. of Britain's unemployed and I asked the Secretary of State to bear that figure in mind. I did that because, according to the latest issue of the Digest of Statistics, published by the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade, we have under construction in Britain 71,885,000 sq. ft. of industrial building, of which 10,638,000 sq. ft. is in London and the South-East and of which the Midland region has 7,983,000 sq. ft. and Scotland 5,592,000 sq. ft. Scotland, with 22 per cent. of Britain's unemployment, has 7·7 per cent. of Britain's factory building.
The Secretary of State has no answer to this. He can talk until he is blue in the face about the size of the grants which are made available to industrialists either in Scotland or who are coming to Scotland. So long as London and the South-East have the lion's share of all the com- mercial and office employment and, at the same time, has more—I repeat and emphasise, constantly more—than its population's share of the country's industrial building, just so long will the right hon. Gentleman—[Interruption] I do not want to take up too much time, but I have quoted the figures.
I must allow time for the Secretary of State to make his speech.
So long as those figures remain, so long as Scotland gets much less even than its population's share—and even that would not be enough—just so long will the right hon. Gentleman be unable to claim with justification that he is administering satisfactorily the industrial development certificate procedure.
I do not have time to quote letters which I had from the Minister of State, Board of Trade, following an earlier debate in which I showed that at Slough there was much more speculative factory building in advance of knowing who the tenants would be, that even now Slough can talk about 30 acres of land which are set aside for factory building and that the Minister of State, Board of Trade, says that, inasmuch as this land was scheduled for industry in the first place, there cannot be any complaint about it. And so this goes on and on. As soon, however, as the electors get a chance, the Tory Government will not be allowed to go on. [Interruption.] Did somebody say that I was wrong again? I was right the last time. I said that Scotland would vote Labour, and it did, and I have no doubt that Scotland will vote Labour again.
I ask the Secretary of State to answer the question put by my hon. Friend about Dounreay. Successful research and development has been carried out on a fast-breeder reactor and a prototype fast-breeder station is now to be built. There are great fears in the knowledge that it may not go to Dounreay. I ask the Secretary of State to say that it must go to Dounreay, because, if it does not, the social and economic consequences in the North will be disastrous.
I should like to have said more about Labour's alternative policy. We believe in a national plan to which regional plans should be related. We will give every encouragement to private enterprise, including tax inducements and subsidies, as at present. After all, we started all this business. Growth industries, however, must go to the job-hungry areas and Labour will not shrink from establishing public enterprise industry where necessary. The object will be to mobilise the manpower and material resources of the whole nation. It is because the Government have manifestly failed to do this that we will have the greatest possible pleasure in voting against them tonight.
I will try to cover a fairly wide range in the time which is available to me. The hon. Member for Hamilton (Mr. T. Fraser) was accurate when he said that the form of these debates—and he remembers more of them than I do—is that the Opposition are mainly destructive in their criticism and that the Government produce their record and say that everything in the garden is lovely. But I do not regard that as an accurate description of the speech today of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Industry and Trade It is, none the less, true that if it is the duty of the Opposition to be destructive—and I do not entirely agree with that—it is necessary for the Government to highlight at least what has been achieved in the year before.
I do not want to take up the time of the Committee by explaining the various reasons that lay behind the fact that the White Paper on Industry and Employment, to which various references have been made, is not available. As hon. Members on both sides will remember, the Opposition last year chose to debate exactly this subject before the White Paper was available. I informed the House on 15th May that it would not be available until later this year, because we wanted to make it as comprehensive a report as we could.
The right hon. Gentleman will be aware that this debate could not have taken place any later. This is the last day for Estimates. It was not right of him so to delay the White Paper as to deny us the opportunity of having the information before us when we debated this subject.
It was not delayed for that reason any more than when the hon. Gentleman and his hon. Friends chose to debate the subject last year long before the White Paper was ready. These are the facts of the matter. As I was asked to explain it, I have done so.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr. Grimond) told the Committee that in the whole of the document that he waved about there was no information whatever about transport. Perhaps he ignored the 40 pages in that Report on roads, which I regard as part of our transport system. I think I should tell the Committee, that, of the 285 miles of motorway and trunk roads in the central belt referred to in the White Paper, 130 miles are completed or in hand, and 13 schemes of over £100,000, to a total value of £6 million, were started last year.
This year I have authorised already over £8 million and by the end of the year I expect to spend some £12½ million on those roads which are of key industrial importance. Hon. Members on both sides of the Committee have been patient or impatient, according to their natures, about the starting dates for things like the Harthill by-pass and the Hamilton by-pass. The Harthill by-pass has started and contracts have been let for the Hamilton-Larkhall-Uddington by-pass.
In a moment I will reply to the debate, but it is customary for the Minister replying to make a few points on subjects which are the responsibility of his Department.
A number of hon. Members asked about the provision of air services. Most hon. Members will have seen the reports of the meeting yesterday between the Scottish Council, my right hon. Friend the Minister of Aviation and myself. It is not unfair to say that Lord Polwarth, Chairman of the Council, regarded it as a most useful and helpful meeting.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland asked whether it might not be possible to get more small aircraft and perhaps more helicopters for the Islands. As I told the Scottish Council last night, my Highland Transport Board is looking particularly at this point.
I agree with the limited comments of some hon. Members opposite that the White Paper was not an industrial analysis. It was not meant to be. But one very important subject which has also been mentioned today is the supply of water to the central belt of Scotland. The Loch Lomond scheme has already started.
I did not say that it did. As the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Ross) said, the Ayrshire County Council has now got almost complete agreement for instituting the Loch Bradan scheme. Both these schemes are of the greatest importance for getting the abundance of water which is needed for modern industry just as much as for housing.
I do not want to take too much time in discussing housing, because there are still many points to answer. One of the most important single factors in housing at the moment is the provision of more suitable houses for the skilled workers and those in management and technical grades who are being attracted to Scotland and who need to be attracted if our industry is to be fostered. We are doing all we can to encourage local authorities, private builders, new town corporations and others to regard this as an extremely important addition to the housing they are already undertaking.
I do not need to remind the Committee that the volume of housing under construction at the moment is a record since the war. The hon. Member for Hamilton said that in 1951 we cut out a good deal of work that had been done on derelict sites, but it is fair to say that at the same time we stepped up very considerably the housing output.
I want to say something about Irvine and Grangemouth because much was said about new towns. The hon. Member for Central Ayrshire (Mr. Manuel) baited my hon. Friend the Member for Bute and North Ayrshire (Sir F. Maclean) a little unfairly because a great deal of the new industry had gone a little across the border into his area. Like the hon. Member and others, I think that the Irvine local authority has done extremely well in helping to attract this industry. Whether or not in the near future we decide to make Irvine a new town, it is right and proper that the Scottish Special Housing Association should be building an extra 500 houses there, because that building is extremely important for development in the area.
In Grangemouth, as my right hon. Friend said, there has been a great deal of new development although the cost of much of it is not often directly related to the number of jobs. This is because the immediate cost of these very complicated plants is not matched by the number of jobs they provide, although they give jobs to the people who build them. There are particular difficulties of planning in the Grangemouth area and the Committee will remember the special steps which we have taken to try to deal with them.
The studies which my Departments have undertaken for areas outside the central belt are getting along well. I cannot give my hon. Friend the Member for Bute and North Ayrshire the publication date for these reports. It is slightly ridiculous simply to say that it may be in May or June, or whatever the date may be. We are, in fact, working as quickly as we can.
I hope that others will not make the mistake made by the hon. Member for Hamilton when considering plans for other areas of Scotland. The hon. Gentleman said that the plan for Central Scotland was a fraud because it included many things done during the six months or so before the plan was published. I do not believe that he thinks for a second that different projects on which investment should be stimulated and which are identified when the planners study the problem should be held up until the plan is completed.
These other areas are not being forgotten. Last year, we spent about £60 million in public capital investment outside the central belt. We have had the pulp mill, the car ferries made in Aberdeen, the agricultural department of the university in Aberdeen, costing nearly £1 million, while advance factories have gone, or are going, up in a number of different places, such as Peterhead, Fraserburgh and Stranraer. A harbour scheme is well on its way at Eyemouth. This has all been part and parcel of a much wider development, because these areas are essentially rural, and money spent on forestry, agriculture, fishing and tourism is of particular value to these areas at the same time.
My attention has been drawn to this skilful piece of negotiation by my predecessor.
The report on the Borders is coming along well. We have had useful discussions with the woollen and knitwear industries to try to identify the particular problems likely to be thrown up in the next few years. I acknowledge the help in the Highlands offered most willingly by the university departments in Glasgow and Aberdeen. They are starting work very soon.
The hon. Member for Kilmarnock felt that the plan was a sort of confidence trick and the hon. Member for Hamilton put it as low as fraud. I do not accept either of those definitions. I agree with the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland that it is not the sort of plan which might have been produced if one had been able to set 15 or 20 economists down for years to work it out. It is essentially a drawing together of many plans which were developing, to concentrate their effect in growth areas. In spite of certain constituency objections, which no doubt affect certain hon. Members, I do not believe that the Committee dislikes the concept of the growth area.
Nor do I feel that it is a justifiable argument to say that this is piecemeal planning. I accept, as the hon. Member for Fife, West (Mr. W. Hamilton) said,—and it was repeated by many hon. Members—that we do not have a national plan, but for some time before these White Papers came out we had the N.E.D.C. which was doing a great deal of national thinking, and in recent weeks the organisation of N.E.D.C. has visited Scotland with the precise purpose of seeing whether there are regional implications in the N.E.D.C. thinking which ought to be strengthened and developed.
I hope that when we publish the plans for the rest of Scotland we will publish them as a single plan, because it seems to me that all the areas outside the central belt have a good deal of common problems, and that therefore a single report would be best.
The hon. Member for Kilmarnock said that our building industry was not sufficiently highly geared to deal with the problems of construction and so on. It is precisely for that reason that we have not only indicated long-term and very high expenditure of public money, and other money, too, in the construction industry, but have given the guarantees to which my right hon. Friend referred. The building industry itself, and the Scottish Trades Union Congress have often said, "If only you will give us long-term plans, we can get ahead and get industry properly geared up".
The hon. Gentleman also said that building materials had been coming largely from the South. Since the new factory which I opened at Dunbar last year came into production we have been producing 60 per cent. of the cement that we need in Scotland as against only one a year ago, and there has been a great increase in brick production as well.
The hon. Gentleman asked, and his hon. Friend the Member for Hamilton reminded me of this, about the future of Dounreay. I have made inquiries from the Department immediately concerned and it has told me that, although no decision has yet been reached about the prototype reactor even without that there is plenty of work for Dounreay for many years ahead.
That will depend on how the work goes.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland asked about the decline in certain industries. I am happy to tell him that compared with last year chemicals, which was one of the industries about which he asked, went up by 9 per cent., and there are now 10,000 more manufacturing jobs in Scotland than there were last year.
I agree with the right hon. Gentleman that we need a larger number of highly skilled people in Scotland, and this includes the firms which come over from the United States, but I think that it is comforting that many of these firms which come from the South or abroad start on a small scale and work up quite rapidly to being large enough to employ top grade people.
The right hon. Gentleman also asked whether we could do more in the way of differential taxation. Perhaps we can, but at least we have for the first time produced a differential taxation in the form of free depreciation for Scotland and the North-East.
The right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland was not quite fair when he made an entertaining attack on my Development Department, telling me all the things that it did not put into its report, when, as he knows quite well, it is not responsible for any of the things that he mentioned. If it had been responsible for them one would have expected to have found a mention of them in the report, but it is not, so one would not expect to find them there.
I was glad to hear my hon. Friend the Member for Bute and North Ayrshire mention the tourist industry. I wish him the best of luck in his interview with my right hon. Friend about the Clyde steamers tomorrow. In talking about the lack of a national plan, the hon. Member for Fife, West drew attention to the rather more authoritarian rule across the Channel. I admit that for a moment I had a vision of General de Gaulle trying to deal with the Scottish Grand Committee. I wonder which would last longer.
As the hon. Member knows, I was there only this morning.
Mention has been made of the inadequacies of some of the B.O.T.A.C. schemes, but 50 per cent. of all the loans which came to Scotland under B.O.T.A.C. last year was given on schemes of £30,000 or less. I believe that B.O.T.A.C. is trying to do the best it can to help the smaller firms, and also to help with the particular problems of the Highlands.
I want to give the Committee some figures which have not yet been published about the industrial production in Scotland for the first quarter of this year. They have just been worked out. They show that the output of vehicles and the whole of that group of industries is 38 per cent. up on the corresponding quarter last year. In the construction industries the increase is 22 per cent., although I admit straightaway that last year was a very bad one. Nevertheless, it was 10 per cent. up on the year before that. Metal manufactures are 20 per cent. up on last year, and other good contributions are the 9 per cent. increase in chemicals and the 9½ per cent. increase in printing and publishing. The overall industrial output in Scotland was 9 per cent. higher than in the same quarter of 1963.
I finish on a personal note. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock suggested that I should have a placard round my neck saying, "Have kilt, will travel". It is true that during the last two years I have visited almost every area of Scotland; I have been to America, to which hon. Members opposite objected, and I have been to Moscow, to which they did not object. I have met the Scottish Council at frequent intervals and have met the Executive Committee of the Scottish Trades Union Congress as often as has any other Secretary of State. If the hon. Member for Kilmarnock would do a little travelling—and I am prepared to lend him my kilt if he wants it—he would be far better informed about what is being said in other countries about Scotland and what is being said in different parts of Scotland about industrial development.
Over the last year or so I have found no frustration in industry. I have found practically no frustration among local authorities, something to which the hon. Member referred. There may be some frustration in trade union circles—and the hon. Member obviously knows more
|Division No. 139.]||AYES||[9.30 p.m.|
|Abse, Leo||Hamilton, William (West Fife)||Paget, R. T.|
|Ainsley, William||Harper, Joseph||Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.)|
|Albu, Austen||Hart, Mrs. Judith||Pargiter, G. A.|
|Alldritt, W. H.||Hayman, F. H.||Parker, John|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||Healey, Denis||Pavitt, Laurence|
|Awbery, Stan (Bristol, Central)||Henderson, Rt. Hn. Arthur (RwlyRegis)||Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd)|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Herbison, Miss Margaret||Peart, Frederick|
|Baxter, William (Stirlingshire, W.)||Hill, J. (Midlothian)||Pentland, Norman|
|Beaney, Alan||Hilton, A. V.||Popplewell, Ernest|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Holman, Percy||Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Benson, Sir George||Holt, Arthur||Probert, Arthur|
|Blackburn, F.||Howie, W.||Pursey, Cmdr. Harry|
|Blyton, William||Hoy, James H.||Randall, Harry|
|Boardman, H.||Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey)||Rankin, John|
|Boston, T. G.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)||Redhead, E. C.|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)||Reynolds, G. W.|
|Bowden, Rt. Hn. H. W. (Leics, S. W.)||Hunter, A. E.||Rhodes, H.|
|Braddock, Mrs. E. M.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Bray, Dr. Jeremy||Irving, Sydney (Dartford)||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)|
|Brockway, A. Fenner||Janner, Sir Barnett||Robertson, John (Paisley)|
|Broughton, Dr. A. D. D.||Jay, Rt. Hon. Douglas||Ross, William|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper)||Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.)||Short, Edward|
|Carmichael, Neil||Jones, Dan (Burnley)||Skeffington, Arthur|
|Castle, Mrs. Barbara||Jones, Elwyn (West Ham, S.)||Slater, Mrs. Harriet (Stoke, N.)|
|Collick, Percy||Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)||Slater, Joseph (Sedgfield)|
|Corbet, Mrs. Freda||Jones, T. W. (Merioneth)||Small, William|
|Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Kelley, Richard||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)|
|Cullen, Mrs. Alice||Kenyon, Clifford||Snow, Julian|
|Dalyell, Tarn||King, Dr. Horace||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Darling, George||Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank|
|Davies, G. Elfed (Rhondda, E.)||Lewis, Arthur (West Ham, N.)||Spriggs, Leslie|
|Davies, Harold (Leek)||Lubbock, Eric||Steele, Thomas|
|Davies, Ifor (Gower)||Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson||Stewart, Michael (Fulham)|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||McBride, N.||Stonehouse, John|
|Deer, George||MacColl, James||Stones, William|
|Delargy, Hugh||McInnes, James||Swain, Thomas|
|Dempsey, James||McKay, John (Wallsend)||Symonds, J. B.|
|Dodds, Norman||Mackenzie, Gregor||Taverne, D.|
|Doig, Peter||Mackie, John (Enfield, East)||Thompson, Dr. Alan (Dunfermline)|
|Duffy, A. E. P. (Colne Valley)||McLeavy, Frank||Thomson, G. M. (Dundee, E.)|
|Ede, Rt Hon. C.||MacPherson, Malcolm||Thorpe, Jeremy|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.)||Wainwright, Edwin|
|Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Manuel, Archie||Warbey, William|
|Fernyhough, E.||Mapp, Charles||Whitlock, William|
|Finch, Harold||Marsh, Richard||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Foley, Maurice||Mason, Roy||Willey, Frederick|
|Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale)||Mendelson, J. J.||Williams, W. T. (Warrington)|
|Forman, J. C.||Millan, Bruce||Willis, E. G. (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Mitchison, G. R.||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Galpern, Sir Myer||Monslow, Walter||Winterbottom, R. E.|
|George, LadyMeganLloyd (Crmrthn)||Morris, Charles (Openshaw)||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Gourlay, Harry||Morris, John (Aberavon)||Woof, Robert|
|Greenwood, Anthony||Moyle, Arthur|
|Grey, Charles||Mulley, Frederick||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)||Neal, Harold||Mr. Lawson and|
|Grimond, Rt. Hon. J.||Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon)||Mr. Charles A. Howell.|
|Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.)||Owen, Will|
|Allason, James||Balniel, Lord||Bidgood, John C.|
|Anderson, D. C.||Barlow, Sir John||Biffen, John|
|Arbuthnot, Sir John||Barter, John||Biggs-Davison, John|
|Ashton, Sir Hubert||Batsford, Brian||Bingham, R. M.|
|Atkins, Humphrey||Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gos & Fhm)||Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel|
|Awdry, Daniel (Chippenham)||Berkeley, Humphry||Black, Sir Cyril|
|Bourne-Arton, A.||Hornby, R. P.||Pitman, Sir James|
|Box, Donald||Hornsby-Smith, Rt. Hon. Dame P.||Pitt, Dame Edith|
|Braine, Bernard||Hughes-Young, Michael||Pounder, Rafton|
|Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter||Hurd, Sir Anthony||Powell, Rt. Hon. J. Enoch|
|Brown, Alan (Tottenham)||Hutchison, Michael Clark||Price, David (Eastleigh)|
|Bryan, Paul||Iremonger, T. L.||Price, H. A. (Lewisham, W.)|
|Buck, Antony||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)||Prior, J. M. L.|
|Bullard, Denys||James, David||Proudfoot, Wilfred|
|Bullus, Wing Commander Eric||Jennings, J. C.||Pym, Francis|
|Campbell, Gordon||Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)||Redmayne, Rt. Hon. Martin|
|Carr, Compton (Barons Court)||Johnson, Eric (Blackley)||Rees, Hugh (Swansea, W.)|
|Carr, Rt. Hon. Robert (Mitcham)||Jones, Arthur (Northants, S.)||Rees-Davies, W. R. (Isle of Thanet)|
|Chataway, Christopher||Joseph, Rt. Hon. Sir Keith||Renton, Rt. Hon. David|
|Clark, Henry (Antrim, N.)||Kaberry, Sir Donald||Ridley, Hon. Nicholas|
|Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmth, w.)||Kerans, Cdr. J. S.||Ridsdale, Julian|
|Cooke, Robert||Kerby, Capt. Henry||Rippon, Rt. Hon. Geoffrey|
|Cooper, A. E.||Kerr, Sir Hamilton||Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)|
|Costain, A. P.||Kershaw, Anthony||Robertson, Sir D.(C'thn's & S'th'ld)|
|Craddock, Sir Beresford (Spelthorne)||Kimball, Marcus||Roots, William|
|Critchley, Julian||Kirk, Peter||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard|
|Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. Sir Oliver||Kitson, Timothy||Russell, Sir Ronald|
|Curran, Charles||Lambton, Viscount||Scott-Hopkins, James|
|Currie, G. B. H.||Langford-Holt, Sir John||Shaw, M.|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry||Shepherd, William|
|Dance, James||Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland)||Smith, Dudley (Br'ntf'd & Chiswick)|
|Digby, Simon Wingfield||Linstead, Sir Hugh||Smyth, Rt. Hon. Brig. Sir John|
|Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. M.||Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey (Sut'nC'dfield)||Stainton, Keith|
|Drayson, G. B.||Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Stanley, Hon. Richard|
|Duncan, Sir James||Longden, Gilbert||Stevens, Geoffrey|
|Eden, Sir John||Loveys, Walter H.||Stodart, J. A.|
|Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton)||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir Malcolm|
|Elliott, R. W. (Newc'tle-upon-Tyne, N.)||McAdden, Sir Stephen||Storey, Sir Samuel|
|Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn||McLaren, Martin||Studholme, Sir Henry|
|Errington, Sir Eric||Maclean, Sir Fitzroy (Bute & N. Ayrs)||Summers, Sir Spencer|
|Farey-Jones F. W.||Macleod, Rt. Hn. Iain (Enfield, W.)||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Farr, John||MacLeod, Sir John (Ross & Cromarty)||Taylor, Frank (M'ch'st'r, Moss Side)|
|Fisher, Nigel||McMaster, Stanley R.||Taylor, Sir William (Bradford, N.)|
|Fletcher-Cooke, Charles||Maddan, Martin||Teeling, Sir William|
|Fraser, Ian (Plymouth, Sutton)||Maginnis, John E.||Temple, John M.|
|Galbraith, Hon. T. G. D.||Maltland, Sir John||Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret|
|Gammans, Lady||Marshall, Sir Douglas||Thomas, Sir Leslie (Canterbury)|
|Gardner, Edward||Marten, Neil||Thompson, Sir Kenneth (Walton)|
|Giles, Rear-Admiral Morgan||Mathew, Robert (Honiton)||Thompson, Sir Richard (Croydon, S.)|
|Gilmour, Sir John (East Fife)||Matthews, Gordon (Meriden)||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. Peter|
|Glyn, Dr. Alan (Clapham)||Maude, Augus (Stratford-on-Avon)||Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin|
|Glyn, Sir Richard (Dorset, N.)||Mawby, Ray||Touche, Rt. Hon. Sir Gordon|
|Goodhew, Victor||Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J.||Turner, Colin|
|Gower, Raymond||Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C.||Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.|
|Grant-Ferris, R.||Mills, Stratton||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Green, Alan||Miscampbell, Norman||van Straubenzee, W. R.|
|Gresham Cooke, R.||Montgomery, Fergus||Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Grosvenor, Lord Robert||More, Jasper (Ludlow)||Vickers, Miss Joan|
|Gurden, Harold||Morrison, Charles (Devizes)||Walder, David|
|Hall, John (Wycombe)||Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Walker, Peter|
|Hamilton, Michael (Wellingborough)||Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles||Walker-Smith, Rt. Hon. Sir Derek|
|Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N. W.)||Neave, Airey||Wall, Patrick|
|Harris, Reader (Heston)||Noble, Rt. Hon. Michael||Webster, David|
|Harrison, Brian (Maldon)||Nugent, Rt. Hon. Sir Richard||Wells, John (Maidstone)|
|Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye)||Oakshott, Sir Hendrie||Williams, Sir Rolf Dudley (Exeter)|
|Harvey, Sir Arthur Vere (Macclesf'd)||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)|
|Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.)||Orr-Ewing, Sir Ian (Hendon, North)||Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)|
|Harvie Anderson, Miss||Osborn, John (Hallam)||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Hastings, Stephen||Osborne, Sir Cyril (Louth)||Wise, A. R.|
|Page, John (Harrow, West)||Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick|
|Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel||Page, Graham (Crosby)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Richard|
|Heath, Rt. Hon. Edward||Panned, Norman (Kirkdale)||Woodhouse, Hon. Christopher|
|Hendry, Forbes||Partridge, E.||Worsley, Marcus|
|Hiley, Joseph||Pearson, Frank (Clitheroe)|
|Hill, J. E. B. (S. Norfolk)||Peel, John||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Hocking, Philip N.||Percival, Ian||Mr. Finlay and Mr. MacArthur.|
|Holland, Philip||Pike, Miss Mervyn|
The CHAIRMAN then proceeded forthwith to put severally the Questions, That the total amounts of the Votes outstanding in the several Classes of the Civil Estimates, including Revised Estimates and Supplementary Estimates, and the total amounts of the Votes outstanding in the Defence Estimates, including a Supplementary Estimate, be granted for the Services defined in those Classes and Estimates; and that sanction be given to the application of the sums temporarily authorised in respect of the Navy, Army and Air Services [Expenditure].