HC Deb 28 November 1944 vol 404 cc2371-2
4 Mr. Mainwaring

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power (1) whether the terms of reference given to the newly appointed Fuel and Power Advisory Council are intended to include the development of coal resources;

(2) whether, in order to satisfy fully the future needs of the country in regard to coal supplies and, particularly, provide for new sinkings, he is prepared to add to the Fuel and Power Advisory Council men with experience of both sides of the industry;

(3) whether, in order to provide for the development of industry in Wales, he is prepared to add to the Fuel and Power Advisory Council at least one member with a special knowledge and experience of Welsh needs and resources.

The Minister of Fuel and Power (Major Lloyd George)

The general function of the Council is to consider and advise upon the broad and fundamental problems of the development and efficient utilisation of the nation's fuel and power resources as a whole. The Council is not so constituted as to be qualified to deal with such matters as the organisation and actual working of the various fuel industries, nor was it ever my intention to refer to them such problems, which are proper to other and quite differently constituted bodies, and are in fact being considered by such bodies.

Mr. Mainwaring

Is the right hon. and gallant Gentleman prepared to consider whether, in the light of the future requirements of the country and the importance of the development of the mining industry, he should in fact add to the Council on the lines I suggest?

Major Lloyd George

No, Sir. The hon. Member, I gather from his Questions, is more concerned with the coalmining industry as such. This Council is more concerned with utilisation than with actual production. Other bodies are looking into that question at the moment.

Mr. James Griffiths

Will the Council make a private inquiry and send in its report, or is it intended that it shall receive evidence?

Major Lloyd George

When I announced the coming into operation of the Council, I said that it was to consider problems referred to it from time to time.