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1994 - Mr Major’s Comments on G7 Summit

Below is the text of Mr Major’s comments on the G7 summit, made during an interview broadcast on Monday 11th July 1994, and recorded in Naples on Sunday 10th July 1994.


QUESTION:

[Mr Major was asked that although the G7 summit had been confident, what had it done for the unemployed].

PRIME MINISTER:

I think you are right about the tone of the G7, it has been a good deal more up-beat than many people imagined, but I think that is partly because of the patent change there is in in the prospects for the future, not just in the United Kingdom, but in many other countries as well. I think it has done several things for people who are unemployed. Firstly, the growth of trade and the improvement in growth is a very good opportunity to get more people back into work. Second, the summit look at three things, all of which are critical to job creation: the first of them is the acceleration of trade, that is self-evidently vital; the second is the improved labour market flexibility, that is a song that was only sung by the British a few years ago, it is now common currency amongst our partners and was accepted without any demur on this occasion; and thirdly, the complete recognition of the importance of education and training. I make that point for this reason. If one looks over the last 25 years or so we see there is a rising pool of people across the world who are unemployed, people with skills are more likely to get employment, but people who are unskilled are more likely to form an ever growing pool of people who are unemployed, that is the importance of education and training.

QUESTION:

[Mr Major was asked if the falling dollar would increase unemployment].

PRIME MINISTER:

If you consider what happens on the exchanges, trillions and trillions of pounds across the exchanges each day, you do not solve that problem by a brief discussion. Of course there was discussion of this matter both amongst Heads and amongst Finance Ministers, but I think we have learned that public comment about that is usually counter-productive.