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National Physical Laboratory

Volume 33: debated on Monday 6 December 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Industry, further to the answer of 28 October, Official Report, c. 520, in view of the decline in numbers of staff in post at the National Physical Laboratory since 1976, if he is satisfied that the existing staffing is adequate to keep up with the changing requirement of developments in technology and the needs of the export market; and if he will make a statement.

The programmes of all the Department of Industry's research establishments are kept under continual review taking into account developments in technology and the needs of export markets. Staff numbers are determined in the light of needs and the Government's overall policy for the size of the public sector. The opportunity is taken, where possible, to use the private sector to carry out suitable work. I am satisfied that the numbers at the National Physical Laboratory are adequate for the programme which has been approved.