§ Mr. Lawson
asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection what was the estimated cost to public funds in 1977–78 of the Price Commission, the Office of Fair Trading, and the Monopolies and Mergers Commission; and what was the estimated cost to the firms and industries concerned of preparing evidence for and participating in the investigations carried out by these bodies.
§ Mr. Hattersley
The figures, excluding the cost of allied services, are as followsPrice Commission, £49 million (provisional)Office of Fair Trading, £0.6 millionMonopolies and Mergers Commission, £0.6 million.
It is not possible to make an estimate of the cost to firms and industries. Costs must be balanced against the benefits derived generally from the work of these bodies.