asked the Secretary of State for Energy how the reduced forecasts of electricity demand by the supply side of the industry compare with the latest de-partmental figures: and what will be the implications for the industry and heavy electrical manufacturers.
The Department of Energy's 1979 projections assumed an annual average rate of growth in United Kingdom electricity sales in the range 1.7 per cent.—2·3 per cent. over the period from 1977 to 2000. Following the growth in sales in 1978 and 1979 the rate of growth from 1979 to 1990 implied by the projections is estimated to be in the range 1·4 per cent.—2 per cent. The revised medium-term forecast by the electricity supply industry in England and Wales covers only the first part of this period up to 1986–87. Its sales are forecast to remain static between 1979–80 and 1981–82 and to grow thereafter at an annual rate of 12 per cent.As the hon. Member knows, my right hon. Friend announced in answer to questions on 14 April that work is in hand on all measures announced in my right hon. Friend's statement of 18 December, which provides a framework for the development of the nuclear programme.