Does my right hon. Friend know that there is great support for the firm line that he is taking with the NEB over the return of control of Rolls-Royce to his Department, where it would probably do very much better than in the bureaucratic mess of the NEB? If NEB members threaten to resign en masse, will my right hon. Friend accept their resignations and let them step off this State bureaucratic gravy train, thus saving the taxpayer £2 million a year?
In view of the devastating effect on employment in Deeside, and, indeed, further afield in the county of Clwyd and Gwynedd because of the closure of Shotton, can the Secretary of State give any indication of the additional resources that will be made available to the NEB and the Welsh Development Agency to overcome the problem of unemployment in those areas?
Will the Secretary of State discuss the issue with his colleague the Secretary of State for Scotland, who will tell him that the Scottish Development Agency is accepted by industry, commerce and the banks in Scotland as doing a first-class job? Will he take the SDA as a model for regional development agencies in England, rather than dismantle the work of the NEB?
I do not think that the Industry Bill which is before the House could be thought to be dismantling the work of the NEB, but rather focusing and concentrating it, as well as returning to the taxpayer some of the investment which, in the view of many, was unnecessary in the first place.
I entirely agree with my hon. Friend. Even people such as I who think that the Government have intervened too much since the war, believe that Government have a function in cushioning change.