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Volume 654: debated on Monday 19 February 1962

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asked the Minister of Aviation if he will introduce legislation to give to the Air Transport Licensing Board clearer and more comprehensive terms of reference in relation to the granting of licences under the Civil Aviation (Licensing) Act, 1960.

But is there not a strong case for enabling the Board to take into consideration, first, the weakening of British competition with foreign airlines; secondly, the effect on the order books for British aircraft; and thirdly, the extent to which operators are prepared to run services on unprofitable or less profitable routes?

Of course, all this was very fully debated at the time when the Bill was passed, which was only quite recently. It has only just recently come into effect and the first awards of licences are now coming through. I think we have to allow an Act just passed by Parliament an opportunity of working.

Have not things taken a very unsatisfactory turn in view of the fact that the Corporations are expecting heavy losses? As the Board has given away more than one-third of the prospective growth of B.E.A. in the short time it has been operating, should not something be done now?

All these things are perfectly relevant points to be argued before the Air Transport Licensing Board.