HC Deb 27 November 1950 vol 481 c109W
81. Mr. Slater

asked the Minister of Supply if he is aware that firms in the North are having to reject orders because of the shortage of steel and non-ferrous metals; and what steps he proposes to take to ensure that the necessary steel reaches them in good time to fulfil their contracts.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply which I gave to the hon. Members for Chichester (Mr. Joynson-Hicks) and Hendon, North (Mr. C. I. Orr-Ewing), on 20th November.

84. Mr. F. Longden

asked the Minister of Supply if he is aware of the grave anxiety in the minds of many leading British industrialists at such stock-piling of essential metals, particularly by the United States of America, as represent a considerable threat to production and employment in diverse engineering industries in this country; and what he proposes to do.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

Yes. The Government are not only aware of this anxiety, but share it. Serious shortages of essential metals strike at the basis not only of our economic strength but of our rearmament effort. The Government are taking all the international action open to them to ameliorate the position.

83. Mr. J. Grimston

asked the Minister of Supply when he proposes to announce the level at which sales of copper will be made by his Department in 1951, in view of the anxiety which now exists amongst consumers and the need to plan production ahead.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

I am aware that there is anxiety among copper consumers in this country and an announcement about United Kingdom supplies will be made as soon as possible.