Motor Industry

Oral Answers to Questions — Economic Affairs – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 24th November 1966.

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Photo of Mr Michael Maitland Stewart Mr Michael Maitland Stewart , Fulham

This matter is still under consideration, but the Economic Development Council for motor distribution and repair has now held its first meeting.

Photo of Mr Roy Hattersley Mr Roy Hattersley , Birmingham Sparkbrook

Does not the First Secretary recall that over six months ago his predecessor agreed that the setting up of a specific National Economic Development Council for the motor manufacturing industry was a matter of some urgency? Can he say whether the delay is a result of the reluctance of motor manufacturers to co-operate with the Government?

Photo of Mr Michael Maitland Stewart Mr Michael Maitland Stewart , Fulham

No. My predecessor also said on that occasion, and on other occasions, that there are a good many complicated factors which make it necessary to take great care in this matter, but progress is being made.

Photo of Mr Chris Price Mr Chris Price , Birmingham, Perry Barr

Would my right hon. Friend agree that the National Advisory Council for the motor manufacturing industry simply has not got the resources, and has not, through the history we have seen of it, played the part that it could play? Also, the failure of this body makes it more necessary to get a "Little Neddy" going for the manufacturing plant as soon as possible.

Photo of Mr Michael Maitland Stewart Mr Michael Maitland Stewart , Fulham

One must recognise that the National Advisory Council has done valuable work, but it would be desirable to have a body which, for example, could concentrate more closely on industrial efficiency, economic planning and contacts with other sectors of industry, and that makes the case for what we are now trying to do.