§ Mr. Wareing
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what assessment he has made of the implications of the decision of the Science and Engineering Research Council to defer all applications for new research grants until September for scientific research in the United Kingdom; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Walden
My right hon. Friend has had talks with the chairman of the Science and Engineering Research Council about the council's decision to defer new applications for research grants until September. The council has taken this step in order to absorb the cost to it in 1987–88 of the recently agreed pay settlement for university academic staff. It is for the research councils to decide how best to manage their priorities, but we are discussing with them the implications of this particular settlement.