HC Deb 26 February 1964 vol 690 cc99-100W
Mr. J. Morris

asked the Minister of Power (I) whether he will use his powers under Section 10 of the Iron and Steel Act, 1963, to terminate price-fixing;

(2) whether he is satisfied with the fixing of maximum steel prices in present market conditions, having regard to the Iron and Steel Board's obligations to supervise the industry under competitive conditions and the present restrictive arrangements among steel producers to treat these prices as actual prices; and if he will make a statement;

(3) whether he is aware that the maintenance of high and rigid home prices has led to the import of various steel products, often over the tariff barrier, which could easily be produced in this country; and what action he is taking to remedy this situation;

(4) to what extent he has used his powers of determining maximum prices, under Section 10(1) of the Iron and Steel Act, 1953, in order to protect the consumer.

Mr. Erroll

I have not used powers under Section 10 of the Act and do not propose to do so in present circumstances. The restrictive agreements are subject to review by the Restrictive Practices Court; a test case will come before the Court in April.