HC Deb 28 February 1945 vol 408 cc1364-5
34. Mr. Douglas

asked the Minister of Aircraft Production what has been the average cost per ton of aluminium produced in this country during each of the last four years.

The Minister of Aircraft Production (Sir Stafford Cripps)

I regret I am unable to give the information desired. It would be contrary to the public interest to disclose the prices paid under Government contracts.

Mr. Douglas

On a point of Order. I have not asked the price paid on Government contracts; I asked what is the cost of production of aluminium.

Sir S. Cripps

That is so closely related—all the aluminium being purchased by the Government at a price paid under contract—that it would be a disclosure of the same thing.

Sir Oliver Simmonds

Is it not a fact that, after the great shortage of aluminium in 1940, adequate quantities were provided by private enterprise, with the assistance of the Ministry; and have not prices been continually reduced since then?