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Volume 929: debated on Thursday 7 April 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what percentage of the gross national product was spent on education in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, France and Germany in each year since 1970.

International figures of public expenditure on education on a comparable basis are published in successive editions of the UNESCO Statistical Yearbook and those requested are given in the table below:

It must be emphasised that the UNESCO definition of public expenditure differs from that used in the corresponding statistics officially compiled and published in the United Kingdom, and that the UNESCO definition of gross national product is at market prices—which includes taxes and excludes subsidies—rather than at factor cost. Moreover, since the education systems of the various countries have salient differences which can affect comparability, care should be exercised in any use made of these figures.