HC Deb 25 March 1919 vol 114 c242W

asked the Minister of Reconstruction if he is aware that an attempt is being made to corner the petrol supply, and that in addition the petrol ring has also cornered home-produced benzol, with the object of keeping up the price of motor spirit and, if so, and in view of the urgent necessity of cheap transit, is it his intention to apply for similar powers of control contemplated by him under the Ministry of Ways and Communications Bill as regards the control of electricity?


I have been asked to reply to this question. My attention has been called to a report of the amalgamation of two of the large companies which deal in motor spirit, but I do not understand that there is danger of a corner in petrol. The petrol importing companies have been marketing certain quantities of benzol, but there is no corner in this product, and it is hoped that a large proportion of the output will eventually be distributed by the producers. A scheme for carrying out such distribution is under consideration. In these circumstances action in the direction contemplated in the last portion of the question would not seem to be necessary.