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Nationalised Industries

Volume 931: debated on Thursday 12 May 1977

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24.

asked the Prime Minister when he last met the nationalised industry chairmen.

22.

asked the Prime Minister when he last met the nationalised industry heads.

23.

asked the Prime Minister how often he meets the chairmen of the nationalised industries.

I refer my hon. Friends to the reply which my right hon. Friend the Lord President of the Council gave on my behalf to the hon. Member for Newbury (Mr. McNair-Wilson) on 10th March.

When my right hon. Friend next meets the Chairman of the Central Electricity Generating Board, will he discuss with him the fact that both he and the Secretary of State for Energy have now clearly decided what "good girls" they are and in the matter of Drax B have agreed on the price? In those circumstances, will he assure the House that the order for Drax B, on which thousands of jobs in my constituency and in Scotland depend, will be brought forward with the minimum of delay?

I can give my hon. Friend an assurance that the order for the Drax B power station will be made with the minimum of delay. I do not wish to quantify that, but discussions are proceeding urgently—indeed, at almost daily intervals. We are well aware of the circumstances and my hon. Friend has represented his case fully. We shall have to see how we can bring this to a conclusion. There are certain conclusions that the Government would like to achieve that would improve the health of the industry, but, whatever the result of those conclusions, Drax B will have to be ordered.