§ 21. Mr. DUNCAN MILLAR
asked what steps the Government have taken in carrying out the recommendations of the Committee on the retail price of coal; and whether any effort has been made to secure action on the part of the Scottish coalowners in restricting the price of coal to home consumers?
In addition to the action stated in my answer to the questions asked by my hon. Friend and other hon. Members on the 28th April, an Order in Council has now been issued restricting the export of coal to neutral countries as from to-day. The Scottish coalowners were represented at the Board of Trade Conference at which the following resolution was passed:—This meeting of coalowners, having a desire to moderate the prices of coal for home consumption as far as may be practicable in the interest of the country, recommend that the question of the prices of such coal be considered by the coalowners in the various districts with this object in view.
§ Mr. MILLAR
Is it not the case that coalowners in the Midlands have already agreed to restrict the price of coal for home consumption, and cannot the right hon. Gentleman take steps to see that the Scottish coalowners do the same?
I am not aware of the exact steps which have been taken by Midland coalowners, but I am conferring with them this week, and if my hon. Friend will put a question on the subject I hope to be able to give him the information next week.
§ Mr. MILLAR
In that case, will the right hon. Gentleman also take the opportunity of conferring with the Scottish coalowners and try to get them to take the same action?
§ Mr. J. SAMUEL
Is my right hon. Friend aware that some of the coalowners in the North of England have raised the price of coal in one day by 7s. 6d. per ton for household consumption?
Yes, I have heard of some of these instances, but have not been able to verify them. Any information which is sent to me will be valuable.