HC Deb 03 March 1938 vol 332 cc1288-9
82. Mr. James Griffiths

asked the Secretary for Mines whether he has had further consultations with the representatives of the Dominion of Canada with a view to recovering our export trade in anthracite coal with the Dominion during the forthcoming season; and whether he can indicate the result of his consultations?

The Secretary for Mines (Captain Crookshank)

No, Sir. The decline in exports of United Kingdom anthracite to Canada is due to purely commercial factors outside Governmental control, and has occurred despite the fact that United Kingdom anthracite enjoys a preference of 50 cents per ton over its foreign competitors.

Mr. Griffiths

In view of the fact that the Minister says he is taking no action, I should like to ask whether he realises the importance of this market, and whether he is aware that it was built up largely as a result of the efforts of the late Labour Government, and whether the message he wants to give the South Wales miners is that he cannot keep the trade that the Labour party got for them?

Captain Crookshank

I should be very sorry to have it thought that I said that.

Mr. Griffiths

That is what it sounded like.