§ 85. Mr. HOUSTON
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Shipping whether he has any information to the effect that the Argentine Government intend to prohibit the export of wheat; and whether the Ministry of Shipping is still directing large numbers of steamers to proceed to the River Plate for the purpose of loading wheat for this country?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of SHIPPING (Colonel Leslie Wilson)
In answer to the first part of the question, I have no information beyond what has appeared in the Press. No ships have been directed to the River Plate to load wheat for two months.
§ Mr. HOUSTON
Is it not the fact that the Wheat Commission demanded from the Ministry of Shipping a great many more steamers than they were able to provide cargo for, that many have been lying idle in the River Plate, and that steamers are now on their way to South Africa by direction of the Ministry of Shipping?
§ Colonel WILSON
No, Sir. I have carefully gone into the question, and no ship has been directed for the last two months. It is the fact that there is a large amount of tonnage available at the present time owing to the difficulties as to securing wheat. A great deal of that tonnage may have to be diverted to where wheat is available.
§ Mr. HOUSTON
Can the hon. Gentleman tell me, seeing that the Ministry of Shipping has outlived its usefulness and has now become an expensive incubus, when will it be abolished?