§ Mr. Tinker
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power whether he is aware that there is a feeling of uncertainty over the reason for the call for more coal for use when we take over what has been enemy occupied countries; and will he make a statement on the purposes for which it is needed, as this would have a good effect on the mining community and other citizens?
Major Lloyd George
There is no need for any uncertainty over this matter. It is clear that, as and when the victorious armies of the Allies enter and possess enemy countries and countries now occupied by the enemy, we and our Allies must at the same time accept the liability which now rests with the enemy for maintaining the essential services of those countries. This will be necessary for the prosecution of the war. Railways must continue to run and public utilities must continue to operate both for our own immediate military requirements and in order to maintain the essential life of the community. To the extent that local production of fuel in the countries concerned is insufficient to meet Allied military requirements and the essential needs of the community it will be necessary for the United Nations themselves to provide coal. It will, therefore, be necessary for us, as the war progresses, to produce increasing quantities of coal and to ensure greater efficiency and economy in its use both at home and abroad.