Finally, in answer to the question with regard to Canada and the Free State, I am sure the House will realise that we are taking these steps solely with a view to economic considerations and to the Crisis in the Beef Industry, to which my attention has been called by everyone who has anything to do with the situation, and on which, as my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Bournemouth (Sir H. Croft) said, I have spoken repeatedly in recent weeks.
There is also a Crisis in the Beef Industry.
The Minister does not at present seem to be prepared to take any action at all over the Crisis in the Beef Industry.
Will he assure us again that he appreciates the seriousness of the Crisis in the Beef Industry?
Will the Minister now acknowledge that although that is helpful, it does not resolve the Crisis in the Beef Industry, which is looking for a double figure devaluation of the green pound?
The current Crisis in the Beef Industry adds a further dimension which alters yet again the implications for borrowing and taxation.
Mr. Home Robertson: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will take steps to allow farmers affected by the Crisis in the Beef Industry to graze cattle on set-aside land until it is possible to market them.
The hon. Gentleman is right to draw attention to the serious consequences that have flowed from the Crisis in the Beef Industry, for the rural part of Wales.
The Crisis in the Beef Industry has been a devastating blow, but concerned though we are about the plight of this sector, we must recognise, and take every opportunityto assert, that, over the past four years, British agriculture has experienced a remarkable improvement in its fortunes.
This year's price fixing proposals must of course have regard to BSE and the Crisis in the Beef Industry.
As has been mentioned in the debate, the idea that in some way the European Union is responsible for the Crisis in the Beef Industry is just not true.
The implementation of the Jopling report has taken away from the House the opportunity to decide on some important issues, including - and I agree with the hon. Member for Ludlow on this point - the emergency that has arisen from the Crisis in the Beef Industry.
In view of the unprecedented Crisis in the Beef Industry, there is now a compelling argument for a substantial increase in HLCA payments to help tide suckler cow farmers over their present difficulties.
This afternoon, Mr. Terrig Morgan and Mr. Idris Jones of Pwll farm, Treuddyn, and Mr. Kevin Owen and Mr. George Jones of Trimley hall, Llanfynydd, told me of the Crisis in the Beef Industry.
The Crisis in the Beef Industry since the statement of 20 March dominated the proceedings from March to June.
The Crisis in Our Beef Industry was made in Britain.
I am sure that the Minister does not need me to tell him that the dominating issue in his in-tray is the Crisis in the Beef Industry arising from the continuing export ban.
Given the on-going and inherited Crisis in the Beef Industry, however, may I press him on one constructive point, which has found favour within the National Farmers Union - the position of calves born after 1 August 1996 and that are a minimum of six months old?
The current Crisis in the Beef Industry is compounded by ignorance among decision makers.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what estimate he has made of the impact on rural employment levels of the current Crisis in the Beef Industry.
The Prime Minister: First, to blame us for the Crisis in the Beef Industry, when the Conservatives were responsible for BSE, is extraordinary.
First, to blame us for the Crisis in the Beef Industry, when the Conservatives were responsible for BSE, is extraordinary.
We also said:the Crisis in the Beef Industry demands a response from the Government which may be in conflict with what would be desirable for the industry in the long-term.
I am glad that my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Worcestershire drew attention to the fact that the measures taken against BSE - the problem that underpins the Crisis in the Beef Industry - were aimed at protecting public health.