South-Western Region

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Labour – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th July 1967.

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Photo of Mr Raymond Mawby Mr Raymond Mawby , Totnes 12:00 am, 10th July 1967

asked the Minister of Labour what is the latest figure in total numbers and percentages for unemployment in the South-Western Region; and how this compares with the corresponding month in 1962.

Photo of Mr Ernest Fernyhough Mr Ernest Fernyhough , Jarrow

The figures were 27,484 and 2·0 per cent. in June, 1967 and 17,244 and 1·4 per cent. in June, 1962.

Photo of Mr Raymond Mawby Mr Raymond Mawby , Totnes

Is the hon. Member going to keep those figures written on his heart, to make certain that at least we in the South-West are given a fair crack of the whip if, at some time in the future, there is an upturn in employment?

Photo of Mr Ernest Fernyhough Mr Ernest Fernyhough , Jarrow

As the hon. Member knows, since August, 1966, most of Devon and Cornwall have been included as a development area.

Photo of Mr Ernest Fernyhough Mr Ernest Fernyhough , Jarrow

They have been included as a development area. We are hoping that the benefits available to development areas will help the South-West.

Photo of Hon. Nicholas Ridley Hon. Nicholas Ridley , Cirencester and Tewkesbury

Since the Selective Employment Tax hits the South-West harder than any other area, and since the figures of unemployment in the South-West are worse than they have ever been, cannot the Minister draw the obvious conclusion that he should amend the Selective Employment Tax?

Photo of Mr Ernest Fernyhough Mr Ernest Fernyhough , Jarrow

If the hon. Member wants an answer to that question he knows to which Minister he should put it —the Chancellor of the Exchequer.