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Cynon Valley

Volume 79: debated on Monday 20 May 1985

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5.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what new plans he has to deal with the unemployment problem in the Cynon Valley.

Within the Government's overall economic strategy, I shall continue to pay special attention to the need to sustain and develop industrial and manufacturing investment in areas such as the Cynon Valley.

Is the Secretary of State aware that Cynon Valley now has the highest male unemployment in Wales ? Is he further aware that at least two pits in my constituency are in jeopardy and that, if they close, male unemployment will be pushed up to 50 per cent.? In view of that horrific possibility, does the right hon. Gentleman intend to bring alternative employment to my besieged constituency ?

I am aware of the possibility of further pit closures in the area and of the level of unemployment there. That is why I devoted a considerable part of my speech at last Wednesday's sitting of the Welsh Grand Committee to spelling out our commitment to the valleys of Wales, including the Cynon Valley. I am sorry to say that I do not think that the hon. Lady was able to be there to hear my speech. Perhaps she will find time to read it.

Does my right hon. Friend agree that the most damaging action for the Cynon Valley, and any other part of the country, would be espousal of the Labour party's economic policy, which includes hostility to the European Community, control of pension funds, increasing Government borrowing, renationalisation and higher personal taxation ?

And the establishment of yet another talking shop to preside over the affairs of Wales.

Cynon Valley faces serious problems, as does the valley of Ogmore and Maesteg—

Order. I shall do my best to call the hon. Gentleman on a later question on that part of Wales.