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Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 21st January 1988.

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Photo of Hon. Douglas Hurd Hon. Douglas Hurd , Witney 12:00 am, 21st January 1988

I do not think that the hon. Gentleman has thought the matter through. We are talking about how one allocates three national commercial channels. One can either have a body that sits down and arbitrates —maybe in an unsatisfactory or concealed way—or have what we propose, which is a standard of variety. Any applicant will have to pass a test of variety before a tender is accepted. Once that hurdle is surmounted—the need to provide variety on each national channel—it can be done by tender so that the Exchequer and the taxpayer can benefit to a certain extent from the use of this limited national resource.