HC Deb 06 March 1947 vol 434 cc89-90W
79. Colonel Stoddart-Scott

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power how much coal was exported from this country during February, 1947.

Mr. Shinwell

The figures for February are not yet available.

80. Colonel Stoddart-Scott

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power how much of the 181,631 tons of coal exported from the United Kingdom in January, 1947, was bunker coal; and how much was for use in the homes and industries of other countries.

Mr. Shinwell

The 181,631 tons referred to by the hon. Member included 49,000 tons for bunker depots overseas, 13,000 tons for the Channel Islands, 11,000 tons for His Majesty's Forces overseas, 3,600 tons for gas undertakings at Malta and Gibraltar, and 2.800 tons of anthracite for Canada. I have no detailed information as to the uses to which the balance was applied, but I understand that the bulk of this coal was used for industrial purposes. In any case, since this balance consisted of such inferior fuel as unscreened opencast and slacks, dross, slurry, etc., it is reasonable to assume that it could not be used as house coal.

Mr. De la Bère

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power whether he will give the comparative figures of British coal which was exported abroad, excluding bunker coal, for 1946, through the European Coal Organisation as compared with the savings of coal which have taken place during the period 10th February to 24th February.

Mr. Shinwell

1,357,000 tons of inferior fuel were exported from this country in 1946 through the European Coal Organisation It is estimated that the savings of coal effected during the period 10th–24th February in the consumption of power stations, gas undertakings, coke ovens and general industry amounted to 1,100,000 tons. It is not possible to draw any useful comparison between these figures, as the exports made through the European Coal Organisation consisted of briquetting and anthracite duff, unscreened opencast, slacks and dross, coke and coke breeze, which are greatly inferior in quality to the coal saved under the present restrictions.