HC Deb 05 March 1940 vol 358 cc181-2
20. Mr. De la Bère

asked the Secretary for Mines whether, in connection with the supply of oil by the Burma Oil Company, he can state what supplies of oil, after meeting priorities required by Burma and India, are available for shipment to the Chinese theatre of war; and whether the additional supplies that are being purchased from American sources are beneficial, or otherwise, to our foreign exchange position of dollars and sterling?

Mr. Lloyd

I am informed that no oil products have been sold by the Burma Oil Company to China, and that no such sales are at present contemplated. The Burma Oil Company has, however, on behalf of other oil companies (not producers of oil in Burma or India) made available certain supplies for China, on the understanding that equivalent supplies are simultaneously repaid at a port in Burma or India. No question has, therefore, arisen of supplying China at the expense of Burma or India, and the effect on exchange is exactly the same as if the imported supplies were sent direct to China.