HC Deb 29 July 1965 vol 717 cc677-8
36. Mr. Ennals

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the supply of waste paper is barely sufficient to maintain reasonable stocks at the Mills; and what action the Government is now taking to encourage the collection of waste paper for use within the paper and board industry.

Mr. Jay

I know that the amount of waste paper at present being received by paper and board mills is less than their requirements. The action being taken to increase waste paper collection, was described in the reply which my hon. Friend gave to the hon. Member for Buckinghamshire, South (Mr. Ronald Bell) on 15th July.

Mr. Ennals

While I thank my right hon. Friend for his reply, may I ask him whether he is aware that there is a good deal of concern in the paper industry about this shortage? Is there anything that he can do to make it more widely known and to stimulate local authorities and other bodies in the collection of waste paper?

Mr. Jay

The "little Neddy" for this industry has set up a working party to make proposals, and we hope that we shall have some proposals shortly.

Mr. Lubbock

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the saving to our balance of payments from the collection of waste paper is a very considerable sum, running into millions of pounds per annum? Would he, therefore, have consultations with his right hon. Friend the Minister of Housing and Local Government to ascertain what further assistance can be given to local authorities to encourage them to increase their collections?

Mr. Jay

Yes, Sir. I have already been doing that for some time past.

Mr. John Hall

Would not the right hon. Gentleman agree that the Government themselves have been making a very considerable contribution towards solving the shortage of waste paper?

Mr. Jay

Yes, Sir, and so have the Opposition.