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British Gas Corporation

Volume 76: debated on Monday 1 April 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for Energy if he has any plans to denationalise the British Gas Corporation.

During the past year the sale of the British Gas interest in Wytch Farm and the flotation of Enterprise Oil have been successfully carried through. The possibilities for further introduction of private capital into the gas industry will continue to be examined.

In view of the Government's clear commitment to continue examinations along these lines, how soon will my right hon. Friend be able to come forward with concrete proposals?

We hope that they are not taken during the lifetime of this Parliament. Will the right hon. Gentleman confirm that the Government do not propose during this Parliament to go ahead with any sale of gas showrooms and do intend to introduce the safety legislation that is required? Will the right hon. Gentleman give us one piece of information about the existing privatisation Act? How many consents has the right hon. Gentleman approved under the Oil and Gas (Enterprise) Act, which was passed three years ago to provide for private transmission lines for gas?

I assure the hon. Gentleman that as soon as any decisions on inclusions are reached they will be announced to the House. I am sorry to disappoint the hon. Gentleman regarding his second question. I understand that there are plans for an onshore field to supply gas to two industrial users.