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asked the Secretary of State for Industry, Trade and Regional Development (1) in making a grant under the Local Employment Act, what information he received as to the size of the ships that can be repaired in the new graving dock at Greenock, and the extent to which similar facilities are available elsewhere;
The Government have advanced £2·85 million towards the total cost estimated at £4·25 million. The dock was expected to accommodate ships of the largest sizes contemplated at the time when assistance was offered. I understand that there are larger repair docks in other countries but no other dry dock of comparable capacity in the United Kingdom.
Does my hon. Friend consider that these facilities are sufficiently widely known and does he anticipate that they will be used to capacity? Would he agree that this is an admirable example of the combination of private enterprise and Government policy?
As to the last phrase in the hon. Lady's Question, will the Minister say why there has been such a delay in providing the dock facilities for Aberdeen harbour, long planned, and why he has not placed at the disposal of the Aberdeen Harbour Commissioners the additional finance which has been used as the excuse for the delay? Will he expedite the matter?