HC Deb 23 October 1950 vol 478 cc2468-9
22. Sir Waldron Smithers

asked the Minister of Supply what steps he takes to ensure that work performed for his Department is carried out efficiently; and if he will in future put out all work done for his Department to open tender.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

Contracts are placed only with firms which have satisfied my Department of their competence to undertake the orders and there are appropriate arrangements for inspection of the work. Contracts are placed as a result of competitive tendering to the fullest extent practicable.

Sir W. Smithers

When the Minister says "to the fullest extent practicable," does he not realise that if competition is stopped, efficiency goes down and costs go up, and that Government Departments cannot do the work so well as private firms who tender competitively?