HC Deb 13 February 1961 vol 634 cc916-7
21. Mr. Ginsburg

asked the Minister of Power what has been the improvement in the level of labour productivity for the last three years in the coal mining industry; and how this compares with the change in productivity for industry as a whole.

The Minister of Power (Mr. Richard Wood)

Colliery output per manshift in 1960 was about 12½ per cent. higher than in 1957. Although complete figures for last year are not yet available, it is estimated that output per manhour in manufacturing industry increased by about 12 per cent. over the same period.

Mr. Ginsburg

I note that reply but, because the comparison the Minister has made refers to manufacturing industry, is it not the case that over 1960 productivity in the mines has improved rapidly compared with industry as a whole, which is in fact standing still, and does not that reflect great credit on the miners of this country and the leadership of the National Coal Board?

Mr. Wood

The hon. Gentleman asked about a comparison between 1957 and 1960, which shows the result that I stated. As he suggested, that is satisfactory, but anyone who knows the mining industry will agree that a further move forward in productivity and output per manshift is vitally necessary in the future.

Mr. Gunter

I take it from the last part of the Minister's Answer that he will not expect an improvement unless greater security is given to the mining industry over the next few years?

Mr. Wood

The measure of security in the mining industry is that demand looks like being higher than the amount of coal likely to be produced.

Back to