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Volume 929: debated on Tuesday 29 March 1977

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Nevertheless, does the Prime Minister now feel more optimistic about the possibility of New York landing rights being granted? In that context, will he undertake two things? First, will he undertake from now on to press the case as hard as France has pressed it? Secondly, if success is achieved, will he undertake to take the inaugural flight into New York?

It is proposed to submit more evidence on noise levels to the Port of New York Authority. The French authorities and our own are considering when this information should be submitted. There is a lawsuit in the background, about the date of which no final decision has been taken. We are continuing to work in close co-operation with the French on this matter. President Giscard d'Estaing and I had an exchange of views about the matter bilaterally in Rome last Friday.

Will my right hon. Friend make a renewed request to the Americans for a quick decision on the entry of Concorde into New York? The jobs of aircraft workers in my constituency are threatened, and all this is taking place when the new Aerospace Corporation is coming into being. A speedy decision is long overdue.

The American authorities are aware of our anxieties about the matter. If Mr. Cyrus Vance comes to London later this week, as I understand he will, I or my right hon. Friend the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary will make it our business to acquaint him of our views about the urgency of the matter. We have a battle to fight here in relation to noise and we must proceed by offering more evidence to the Port of New York Authority in the first place.