HC Deb 10 April 1946 vol 421 cc317-8W
84. Sir B. Neven-Spence

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies the difference in price per ton being paid in West Africa and in Ceylon for British purchases of copra; what are the reasons for this difference; at what prices the copra is sold in this country; and what is the price of copra in New York.

Mr. George Hall:

The comparative prices are £20 l0s. f.o.b. Takoradi and £32 8s. f.o.b. Colombo. The higher price paid in Colombo is due to much higher production costs and to the inflated price of copra in the neighbouring Indian market. West Africa normally supplies only very small quantities of copra, imports from that area in 1945 being only 785 tons, compared with 50,000 tons from Ceylon. The Ministry of Food do not sell any copra in this country, but pass it to the manufacturers for conversion into processed products which they receive back for re-sale. Ceylon copra shipped to the United States under Combined Food Board allocations is sold at the Colombo price already quoted.