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Development Areas (Timber-using Industries)

Oral Answers to Questions — Board of Trade – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 13th March 1968.

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Photo of Mr Alick Buchanan-Smith Mr Alick Buchanan-Smith , North Angus and Mearns 12:00 am, 13th March 1968

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he will set up a Departmental inquiry to examine methods of assisting timber-using industry in development areas where forestry is a major local industry.

Photo of Mr George Darling Mr George Darling , Sheffield, Hillsborough

Timber-using industries wishing to establish themselves, or to expand in development areas, are eligible for the full range of incentives available in those areas. I see no reason for a special inquiry.

Photo of Mr Alick Buchanan-Smith Mr Alick Buchanan-Smith , North Angus and Mearns

But is not the right hon. Gentleman aware that in this case we are talking of industries which not only give employment in development areas but utilise home-produced products and at the same time help to save imports?

Photo of Mr George Darling Mr George Darling , Sheffield, Hillsborough

Yes, I appreciate that. We should like to see timber-using industries established in the North-East of Scotland, and other parts of Scotland, too, but we think that this must rest on the commercial judgment of the firms concerned. We shall then give them all the help we possibly can.

Photo of Mr Henry Brewis Mr Henry Brewis , Galloway

Will not the 100-mile limit have a very adverse effect on these industries? Will the right hon. Gentleman make representations that it be raised to at least 200 miles for the North of Scotland?

Photo of Mr George Darling Mr George Darling , Sheffield, Hillsborough

I do not think that it will have the kind of effect which the hon. Gentleman envisages, but I shall see that his views are conveyed to my right hon. Friend the Minister of Transport.