HC Deb 01 March 1948 vol 448 cc31-2W
Mr. Ellis Smith

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power (1) the total amount of U.S.A. coal imported to date and the price; and what would be the price of the same amount of British coal;

(2) to what extent it is intended to import U.S.A. coal in future and for how long.

Mr. Gaitskell

Altogether 606,000 tons of coal were imported from the United States at a total cost of approximately £3 million c.i.f. This coal was sold by the National Coal Board at the prices ruling for comparable grades of British coal and varying according to the transport and handling charges involved. A comparison between the delivered costs of the American coal and of the equivalent grades of British coal cannot be made without the expenditure of an undue proportion of time and effort, but the c.i.f. cost of the American coal may be roughly compared with the pit head cost of the same tonnage of Welsh steam coal and Durham gas coal, namely, £1.4 million. It is not intended to import any more coal from the U.S.A.

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