§ Mr. Austin Mitchell
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations have been made to institutions of the European Communities regarding the application of community funds to the social and infrastructural re-invigoration of inner-city areas.
§ Mr. Baldry
The Government promoted a powerful case for increased assistance from the structural funds for inner city areas. As a result, Merseyside has gained objective 1 status from January 1994. Other inner city areas, including for the first time parts of London, have gained objective 2 status. We were disappointed that some urban areas proposed by the Government were omitted from the list of eligible areas agreed by the Commission. However, at 76 per cent. of our original bid for objective 2 funding, the United Kingdom has done better than almost every other member state.