HC Deb 04 April 1957 vol 568 cc576-7
49. Mr. Stonehouse

asked the Prime Minister what are the details of the plan for the international control of oil pipelines and oil storage depots which he has sent to President Eisenhower.

The Prime Minister

I would refer the hon. Member to my statement in the House on 1st April, in which I referred to the discussions of the problem held at Bermuda. He will recall that I said that we considered the desirability of a policy by which pipeline projects could be given additional protection by a treaty between the interested Governments. I have not, however, communicated to President Eisenhower any plan of the type mentioned by the hon. Member.

Mr. Stonehouse

I wonder whether we might ask the Prime Minister to be more specific about the plans he has in mind; and further, whether he is not in agreement that, as increasing the supply of oil from the Middle East is of such importance to our country. we should support international control of these pipelines rather than monopoly commercial control; and is he further aware that this matter is being proposed at the twenty-fourth session of the Economic and Social Council at Geneva?

The Prime Minister

Yes, Sir, there is a great deal of discussion going on about these possibilities, in which I know the hon. Gentleman is interested, but it would not be right for me to make any precise statement, especially as the countries concerned have to be brought into any such negotiation.