HC Deb 26 November 1947 vol 444 cc291-2W
99. Mr. Austin

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will make a statement on the character and functions of the administration that has taken over control from the North German Coal Commission.

Mr. Mayhew

Yes. In implementation of the agreed report which was published as a result of the conversations in Washington in August, the North German Coal Control was formally wound up on 19th November, and the following arrangements made. The German Bizonal Economic Authorities have been instructed to set up a Department of the German Economic Administration at Frankfurt, to undertake the functions normally exercised by a Government Department in respect of the coal industry. A German Coal Management has been set up at Essen and is responsible to Military Government for the efficient operation of the industry and for the distribution of its products. Herr Heinrich Kost, who has spent his life in the industry, has been appointed general director. He will be assisted by six departmental directors and by an advisory committee consisting of six representatives of the individual mine managements and six representatives of the trade unions. The departmental directors and the members of the advisory committee will be selected for their technical qualifications.

Directives to the German Coal Management will be given by Military Government through a United Kingdom—United States Control Group at Essen. This will have an integrated staff with joint British and American chairmen. The British chairman is Mr. H. E. Collins, senior production director of the North German Coal Control and previously the chief mining agent at Doncaster Amalgamated Collieries. The American chairman is Mr. R. R. Estill, vice-president of the Frick Coal Company of Pittsburg. The United Kingdom—United States Control Group has the power to veto decisions of the German Coal Management which are not in accordance with Military Government policy.