HC Deb 29 January 1951 vol 483 cc556-7
28. Mr. Vaughan-Morgan

asked the Minister of Supply what proposals he has received from the motor industry to ensure a fair distribution of new cars in 1951; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

In delivering cars to the home market, the motor industry will continue to give preference to the urgent needs of doctors and midwives. The industry has recently announced the extension of the period of the covenant governing the re-sale of new cars from one year to two years, and has asked distributors and dealers to ensure that, unless there are exceptional circumstances, no new car is supplied to anyone who already has a serviceable post-war car.

Mr. Peter Thorneyeroft

Will that rule apply to Government Departments as well as private enterprise?

Mr. Strauss

Government Departments have not had any preference in the supply of cars.

Mr. Thorneycroft

Would the right hon. Gentleman answer the question which I asked him? It is not a question of preference. Private persons who have had new cars in the past few years will not be allowed to have another. Will the same rule apply to Government Departments?

Mr. Strauss

If a Government Department, say, one of the Service Departments, requires new cars, they will be able to get them by placing orders in the ordinary way. Unless it is for defence purposes, a car order will not have any preference over others.

Mr. John E. Haire

Could my right hon. Friend say how many prosecutions took place during the last year for violation of contract?

Mr. Strauss

No, Sir.