§ 15. Mr. Nabarro
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power the tonnages of gas coke exports in 1938, compared with 1950 and 1953;and, in view of the growing 1629 ascendancy of Western Germany in European solid fuel markets, what steps are being taken to resume during 1954 a scale of gas coke exports correspondingto the immediate pre-war years, and thus retain to the United Kingdom this valuable export market.
§ The Minister of Fuel and Power (Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd)
The figures are: 621,000, 866,000 and 568,000 respectively, Sir. Our coke exports have been rising during the last three years, and I can assure my hon. Friend that the gas industry is doing all it can to enlarge present markets and find new ones.
§ 16. Mr. Nabarro
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power the respective figures for United Kingdom coal exports and aggregate earnings relating thereto for the years 1951 and 1953;and, in view of the satisfactory current coal and coke stocks position, what steps are being taken to expand coal exports in 1954 with a view to combating Western Germany's growing ascendancy in European coal markets.
§ Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd
In 1951, 7.8 million tons at an f.o.b. value of £29.2 million; in 1953, 14 million tons at an f.o.b. value of £62.2 million. I can assure my hon. Friend that all possible steps are being taken to continue the expansion of our coal exports.
§ Mr. Nabarro
Notwithstanding the fact that national production increased by 3 per cent. in 1953 over 1951, is it not salutary and encouraging thatcoal exports in addition have more than doubled? In spite of these very satisfactory figures, will my right hon. Friend now endeavour to resume the exports of coal on the pre war scale, thereby preventing any further incursion by Western Germany into Britain's vital coal markets in Western Europe?
§ Mr. Lloyd
I appreciate the motive behind my hon. Friend's supplementary question. It is, however, a fact that while the European coal market contracted by about 6½ million tons last year as compared with the year before, and Western German exports increased by 1.4 million tons, the United Kingdom exports in that market increased by 2 million tons, so that our share of the market was actually larger.