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Post Office Closures

Part of Opposition Day — [7th Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 2:11 pm on 19th March 2008.

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Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Secretary of State, Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform, Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform 2:11 pm, 19th March 2008

I shall give way in a moment. I want to come to the substance of the Opposition motion. As my hon. Friend the Member for South Ribble has rightly identified, there is a significant problem with the proposition that we should simply postpone making decisions. The hon. Member for Rutland and Melton has made it clear—this is important for my hon. Friends, who I am sure heard what he said—that he is not prepared to match the subsidy that we propose to invest in the Post Office. Somehow, he believes that that will allow the subsidy to go further, but of course it will not—it will mean a significant diminution in the effectiveness of the subsidy that is going in.

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