§ 123. Colonel GRETTON
asked the Minister of Munitions if the erection of a factory for the production of motor tractors at Cork by the Henry Ford Company, of America, has been sanctioned, and, if so, for what reasons; and if British firms have been consulted and offered facilities for producing the motor tractors required?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of MUNITIONS (Mr. Kellaway)
A licence has been issued to Messrs. Ford, subject to the condition that they are to confine their manufactures during the War to agricultural machinery and that they should import their own plant and material except so far as sanctioned by the Minister of Munitions, and also comply with the directions of the 370 latter as to conditions of employment and rates of wages. The whole matter was carefully considered by the Government, and it was decided that it was desirable to issue this licence in view of the urgent necessity for ample provision of agricultural tractors for use in the United Kingdom in the immediate future. In order that British industry may not be placed at a disadvantage thereby negotiations have been opened with British firms in the hope that they will act together, and, if suitable arrangements for the organisation of a similar factory in this country can be arranged, the Government will afford all possible facilities.
§ Captain DONELAN
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that Cork affords very special facilities for such a factory as that referred to in the question?