HC Deb 06 February 1956 vol 548 c1338
45. Mr. A. Roberts

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what factors he takes into account in calculating the retail price of domestic coal.

Mr. Aubrey Jones

The cost to retail merchants at their depots, the costs of distribution from depots to consumers, and an allowance for net profit.

Mr. Roberts

Is the same calculation used to arrive at the price of coal to industrial consumers?

Mr. Jones

There is no maximum price of coal to industrial consumers. The maximum retail price applies only to domestic coal.

Mr. Sylvester

In view of the Minister's answer about transport and so on, can he say how it is that the price in mining areas, where the coal is fetched straight from the pits, is double the average pithead price paid to the Coal Board?

Mr. Jones

All I can say is that the maximum retail price is determined after a representative sample has been obtained. I assure the hon. Member that the profit margin fixed with the Ministry is not unduly generous.