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Western Isles (Development Programme)

Volume 974: debated on Wednesday 21 November 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what progress has been made in implementing the European Communities proposals for an integrated development programme for the Western Isles.

This proposal, which is part of a complex agricultural structures package, is still being considered by a Council working party. Progress has been slow because all member States have reservations about some parts of the package.

I thank the Secretary of State for that reply. Will he give an assurance that there will be no delay in the implementation of the scheme through lack of enthusiasm on the part of the Government to accept the initial contribution which they are required to make under it?

I can certainly assure the right hon. Gentleman that we are playing a full part in the discussions and that, if the scheme is agreed generally by our partners in the Community, there will be no delay on our part in carrying out whatever is agreed.