To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps he intends to take to bring more jobs to the east end of Glasgow, in the light of the proposed closure of the tobacco works in Dennistoun; and if he will make a statement.
[holding answer 18 May 1990]: The announcement of the closure of the Imperial Tobacco factory at Dennistoun—with the associated loss of jobs—is to be regretted. I understand that the decision has been taken on strictly commercial grounds as part of an overall rationalisation programme to enable the company to compete within the single European market. The company's northern trading division will remain in Glasgow.While the decision is ultimately one for the company, in the light of its commercial judgment, we are concerned that Imperial Tobacco should take all possible steps to alleviate the economic and social effects of the closure on the east end of Glasgow. In this context, it is reassuring that Hanson International, which owns Imperial Tobacco, is to undertake a major counselling, re-training and job search exercise, in addition to its offer of generous redundancy terms to staff who will lose their jobs.The local enterprise trust, the East End Executive, will be available to complement the company's efforts through the provision of business counselling and advice.