§ Mr. Wallace
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations his Department has made to the European Commission regarding the inclusion of ferry services to Orkney and Shetland within the ambit of community assistance under the European regional development fund; and if he will make a statement.
§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
[holding answer 7 February 1992]: As I have made clear previously, the Government are willing to consider alternative arrangements for financial support for ferry services to Orkney and Shetland, including the possibility of attracting additional European Community funding. As yet, however, we have received no specific proposals for alternative financial arrangements. My Department discussed in December of last year with Orkney and Shetland islands councils the possibility of commissioning a study into alternative arrangements for financial support for ferry services.