§ 106. Mr. D. Marshall
asked the President of the Board of Trade in view of the Minister of Health's housing programme, what is the present holding of timber in the United Kingdom; what arrangements 241W have been made for a supply of timber; and what are the estimated imports for 1947.
§ Sir S. Cripps
The stocks of softwood in the country at the beginning of the year were 214,000 standards. The arrangements made to obtain supplies were described in the Debate on the Adjournment on 4th February, and a more detailed statement will shortly be published in the Board of Trade Journal. Negotiations with the chief supplying countries have not progressed far enough yet to enable any close estimate to be made of imports during 1947.
§ 112. Mr. Hector Hughes
asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is aware that there is a shortage of timber for the Aberdeen boxmaking industries which, as a result, are threatened with serious unemployment; and if he will allocate for these industries some of the large quantities of timber now being imported from the Continent of Europe.
§ Sir S. Cripps
I am aware that present supplies of timber are not sufficient to meet all manufacturing requirements. Round timber from Germany which I presume my hon. and learned Friend has in mind, must be used as far as possible for conversion to building sizes in the interests of the housing programme, but the requirements of the boxmaking industry will be kept in mind, along with those of other manufacturing industries.