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Tuesday, 7 May 1957

Mr BEALE - It is true that Mr. Breen is resigning as head of the Department of Defence Production as from to-day or to-morrow. The Government has decided to appoint Mr. Knott as the new secretary of the department. I agree that there are some advantages to be gained by bringing the two departments together, but at the present moment there would also be some administrative disadvantages. A number of complex problems are facing one or other of the departments, and they would be aggravated if the two departments were to be amalgamated. In the resultant readjustment, perhaps those problems would not get the attention that they deserve individually and which they can better get by being dealt with by separate secretaries. However, I appreciate the point that has been raised and, if 1 may make a forecast without prejudice, I forecast that the time will come when the two departments will be amalgamated.

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