HC Deb 06 April 1921 vol 140 cc268-9
53. Sir W. de FRECE

asked the Prime Minister, for the purposes of comparison, if he will cause to be issued a statement showing wage movements in other countries whereby they are able successfully to compete with us in the neutral markets of the world?


I have been asked to reply. As has already been stated, we are unable to furnish the information desired by my hon. Friend. International comparisons of this kind can, I am afraid, produce little or no practical result until the various countries have reached an agreement to carry out wages inquiries on a national scale at concerted and frequent intervals, and so pursue identical methods, not only in collecting and collating data, but also in presenting the results.


Would it not be possible to get a great proportion of that information from our Consular Service?


Is not the policy of the Government in direct opposition to that, by setting up district instead of national schemes?


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that in Sweden all the trade unions have agreed that their wages shall be reduced according to the index cost of living, now 150 per cent. above pre-War rate, and further that they have agreed to hold an inquiry every month to adjust wages on this same basis?


No, I am not.

January to May, 1920. June, 1920. July, 1920. August, 1920. September, 1920, to May, 1921.
Per ton. Per ton. Per ton. Per ton. Per ton.
s. d. s. d. s. d. s. d. s. d.
For lots of 4 tons and over 84 0 120 0 121 0 122 0 127 6
January—May, 1920. June, 1920—May, 1921.
Additional charges for smaller lots as follows:— s. d. s. d.
1 ton and over but under 4 tons 10 0 per ton 15 0 per ton.
2 cwts. and over but under 1 ton 1 0 per cwt. 1 6 per cwt.
1 cwt. and over but under 2 cwts. 2 0 per cwt. 3 0 per cwt.
28 lbs. and over but under 1 cwt. 3 0 per cwt. 4 6 per cwt.
14 lbs. and over but under 28 lbs. 4 0 per cwt. 6 0 per cwt.

The above maximum prices were fixed by agreement between the Ministry and the trade, and are operative until 31st May, 1921. The export of basic slag is prohibited except under licence. Otherwise this commodity is not controlled by any Government Department.