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Clause 2

Volume 978: debated on Monday 11 February 1980

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Amendments made: No. 6, in page 3, line 5, leave out 'and'.

No. 7, in page 3, line 9, at end insert:

(c) in respect of the capital amounts outstanding immediately before that day in respect of sums paid to British Aerospace under section 45 of that Act but treated in accordance with the terms and conditions applicable to the payment as if they had been paid under section 16 of that Act'.—[Mr. Michael Marshall.]

10.15 pm

I beg to move amendment No. 8, in page 3, line 10, at end insert:

'and such entitlement and liability shall rest in the successor company on that day'.
I am sure that we would withdraw the amendment if the hon. Gentleman could give us some reassurance. He has been cast in one of the better roles in the saga, and I hope that he can find some comforting words for us.

Anxious as I am in view of his genial mood, to meet the hon. Gentleman, the amendment, as drafted, would make nonsense of clause 2. If the amendment were made, the clause would provide both for extinguishing liabilities and for their continuance. I am sure that those conflicting objectives were not in the hon. Gentleman's mind. In his reasonable mood at this hour of the night, perhaps he will recognise the difficulties in drafting. I hope that, on reflection, he will not wish to cause that problem. I am sure that this is not intended to be a wrecking amendment

On one view, I believe that theamendment has the effect of totally reversing the intention of clause 2. I therefore realised that the hon. Gentleman would raise objections.

We are not entirely happy about the transfer of liabilities, entitlements, rights and obligations to the successor company. We have heard a great deal today about the transfer and believe that the Government will be intransigent. Bearing in mind the tone in which the hon. Gentleman replied, I do not believe that we shall make much progress at this juncture. However, we may feel the need to press the matter in another place. Accordingly, I beg to ask leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.