HC Deb 15 November 1954 vol 533 cc8-9
14. Mr. Godber

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power the figure for distributed stocks of house coal to the latest convenient date together with comparable figures for the last two years.

Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd

1.66 million tons of merchants' stocks on 6th November, compared with 2.01 million last year and 2.09 the year before.

Mr. Godber

Is my right hon. Friend satisfied that the stocks are likely to be sufficient to meet all reasonable needs?

Mr. Lloyd

Yes. For two reasons. First, about 700,000 tons more coal has been delivered during this summer than during the summer of last year. Second, the imports which we have arranged are largely composed of house coal.

Mr. Langford-Holt

In view of the vast increase in imports—which information the Minister gave last week—and the reduction in the present stocks, can my right hon. Friend assure the House that he regards the situation as being anything but satisfactory?

Mr. Lloyd

The position is that imports are coming in at the rate of over 100,000 tons a week.