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Volume 959: debated on Thursday 30 November 1978

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I meet representatives of the CBI from time to time, at NEDC and on other occasions. Further meetings will be arranged as necessary.

Will my right hon. Friend ignore the synthetic anger of the official Opposition about the Ford situation? When he next meets representatives of the CBI, will he take them on a guided tour of the House of Commons car parks where they will be able to count the number of foreign cars owned by Opposition Members? [Interruption.] A substantial minority, if not an absolute majority, have imported cars from abroad.

I well understand my hon. Friend's point, but I do not think that I shall take that particular course. When I meet CBI representatives I shall be very anxious to discuss with them the points which they put to me in a letter which I received today in which they say that, as far as they know, half a million workers have settled within the Government's 5 per cent. guidelines. But they wish to discuss with me—[An HON. MEMBER:"That is not true."] If it is not true, the hon. Gentleman must take it up with the CBI. I do not want to fan any more quarrels between the CBI and the Opposition. I wish them well. The CBI wishes to discuss with me some better arrangements for settling pay in the long term. In its letter it also states that it is fully behind the Government in their plans, progress and determination to keep down inflation.