asked the Minister of Transport when he expects that the Docks and Inland Waterways Executive will report to him on the priority that should be given to steel allocation for the new deep-water quay in the River Tees; and if he will make a statement.
asked the Minister of Transport if he has yet received the report of the Docks and Inland Waterways Executive on the allocation of steel for the construction of the deep-water quay at Middlesbrough; and if he will make a statement.
As the result of a recommendation by the Docks and Inland Waterways Executive, dealing with port facilities in the Tees area, the British Transport Commission have asked them to proceed with the preparation of a scheme under Section 66 of the Transport Act. The purpose of the scheme will be to ensure, by unified control, the best possible use of existing facilities, and to enable the problem of future development to be considered against the wider background of the port as a whole, without the complications attendant on divided ownership and responsibility.In these circumstances and having regard to the continuing need to limit capital investment, the proposal to provide new berths in the River Tees has been considered in relation to other projects and, in accordance with the Executive's recommendation, I am not prepared to authorise the commencement of this work at present.
In view of the deep anxiety which exists on Teesside about the lack of progress of this scheme and of the fact that there is something like £40 million or £50 million worth of development in this area, will my right hon. Friend look at this matter again in a more favourable light?
As my hon. Friend knows: this has occupied a good deal of my attention and I have considered it very fully, but, as I have indicated in my reply, in relation to other projects, especially port projects, throughout the country, I regret that I cannot reconsider the decision.
Can the right hon. Gentleman say what projects can possibly be more important than this one to Middlesbrough?
Not in rely to a supplementary question.