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Government Orders (Small Firms)

Volume 480: debated on Monday 6 November 1950

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asked the Minister of Supply what steps are being taken to utilise for Government requirements the productive capacity of smaller firms engaged in tooling work and light engineering.

Government requirements do not at present provide work for all the small firms willing to help but many such firms are engaged directly or indirectly on Government orders. We have a list of suitable capacity firms if and when needed.

Can my right hon. Friend say how these smaller firms can make known to his Department what contribution they can make to national requirements? Is the matter left to pure chance or to the trade associations concerned, which may consist of the larger firms only?

Firms are not backward in letting us know if they have spare capacity. We had applications from about 5,000 firms in three or four months. The normal process is preferably for firms to inform our regional controller if they have spare capacity, and he will make a note of it.