§ Mr. Granville
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Economic Warfare what effect the Allied bombing and blockade has had upon enemy stocks and supply of oil; and whether Germany is now short of essential requirements.
§ Mr. Foot
As regards enemy supplies I would refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave on 21st July to the hon. Member for Middlesbrough East (Mr. A. Edwards). I can state with confidence that since the entry of Russia into the war Germany has been compelled to rely entirely upon the resources available in the territories under her own control, that no supplies have arrived through the blockade from or through neutral territories and that there has therefore been no contribution to Axis supplies or stocks from this source. It is believed that owing to the inadequacy of his production, and the heavy demands of the Russian front in recent years, the enemy has been un-1406W able to accumulate and hold any substantial stocks, and that the limited stocks in existence have been drawn upon in recent months to meet the deficiency caused by the inroads of Allied bombing on current output. It would not be desirable for me to disclose a precise estimate of the position at the present time, but I can state that the enemy has suffered a substantial loss of stocks as a result of damage to tankage at producing installations and by the destruction of storage dumps and tank-cars in transit.
As regards requirements, there is no doubt that Germany's war effort has for many months been handicapped by lack of oil. It is also clear that in recent months this has had an increasing effect, directly as well as indirectly, on the enemy's operational efficiency.