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Twenty officials of my Ministry are fully employed on this work and a larger number spend part of their time on it. There has been no significant change since devaluation.
But since it was the assessment of the Government that the necessity for the prices and incomes policy was enhanced by devaluation, can the hon. Gentleman indicate why there has been no increase in the number of civil servants, and can he indicate whether he expects the number to be increased should the Government seek statutory reinforcement for their policy?
It is the Government's view that devaluation made the successful working of the prices and incomes policy all the more important. Before devaluation it was working successfully with the number of civil servants that we then had. Since devaluation it has been working successfully with the same number of civil servants. As to the future number required to operate the policy, that involves a hypothesis, and, therefore, I should not want to comment on it.