HC Deb 07 July 1936 vol 314 cc999-1000
11. Mr. E. DUNN

asked the Secretary for Mines the amounts of deficiencies now existing under district agreements in the coal-mining industry and in what districts the deficiencies exist, stating the amounts in each district; and what are the profits which have been made in the same districts covering the periods of the accumulated deficiencies?

The SECRETARY for MINES (Captain Crookshank)

This information is not in the possession of my Department.

12. Mr. DUNN

asked the Secretary for Mines whether he will make representations to the coal owners in all districts in the country to agree to the cancellation of all existing deficiencies so as to enable the miners to share the financial advantages anticipated in the coal industry from the operations of the new coal-selling schemes?


I would refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to two questions by the hon. Member for Llanelly (Mr. J. Griffiths) on 2nd July.


; In view of the fact that the coal trade is now making enormous profits, as a result of the arrangement made last year, and in order that the miners might secure full advantage from the selling schemes, might not the Minister make some representation, as suggested in the question on the Paper


The answer to the hon. Member is, as I said the other day, that now there is a joint consultative committee in existence and full national machinery has been set up, it should be left to do its work.


Is it not a fact, in view of the large deficiencies, that it will take years before the miners secure any benefit from the selling agencies, and does the Minister not think that the Government ought to use their influence with the coalowners to dispose of the outstanding deficiencies?


As this form of machinery now exists it had better tackle this problem for itself.


Does the Minister consider that there is the remotest chance of these large deficiencies ever being met by the miners, and should not they be dealt with as any business house would, namely, write them off as bad debts?


Is the Minister aware that the deficiencies are over £40,000,000?