asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what representations he has received from the construction industry in recent months, regarding the state of the industry; and if he will make a statement.
Representations have been received from the Federation of Building and Civil Engineering Contractors (Northern Ireland) Limited, the Association of Consulting Engineers and the Northern Ireland Quarry Owners Association. As explained in the Budget Statement, the present serious economic situation requires a significant reduction in domestic demand in 1976–77. In Northern Ireland this entails a reduction of £9·5 million in the planned public capital programme in 1976–77 after allowing for the exemption of priority sectors such as housing. My hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State discussed these matters with the Northern Ireland Construction Industry Advisory Council on 25th June.