S.T.D. calls are charged in twopenny units, according to their duration. Customers with S.T.D. pay, on average, 2·3d. for a local call; this is about 20 per cent. cheaper than the average payment by customers without S.T.D.
Is my right hon. Friend aware that many calls to business houses are costing three or four times the cost of the former fixed charge calls and that that is in no way due to the fault of the caller? Will he look at that problem and, while doing so, bear in mind that at this time when the Government are pleading for price stability here is a chance for the Government to show an example?
Yes. My hon. Friend raises a point which concerns the ability of a firm called on S.T.D. to put the call quickly through to the individual concerned. I very much hope that firms will co-operate in improving their techniques in this respect.