HC Deb 25 May 1979 vol 967 cc341-3W
Mr. McQuarrie

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in the light of the fact that farmers and fishermen are being seriously handicapped in operating their businesses due to the acute

and how much sugar is stored in each member country.

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

The Commission estimates that for the crop year, October 1978 to September 1979, the total sugar available, including preferential imports, will exceed Community requirements by about 3.2 million tonnes. The surplus sugar is likely to be exported outside the Community, largely with the help of export refunds. No sugar has been bought into intervention during the years. Information on commercial stocks held in the individual member States is not available.

Mr. John Evans

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is the current annual cost of storing surplus sugar within the EEC; and what was the cost in each previous year of surplus.

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

No sugar has been bought into intervention in the Community in 1979. The net cost to the Community Budget of intervention buying of sugar in the years since 1972 has been as follows:

the current year; and how this compares with each of the five previous years.

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

The information is as follows:

shortage of diesel fuel, what steps he proposes to alleviate this situation.

Mr. Peter Walker

If growers or operators continue to experience serious difficulties after appealing to their suppliers, they should contact the appropriate Agriculture Department which, in liaison if necessary with the Department of Energy, will do what it can to help. The Agriculture Departments will continue to monitor developments and keep in close touch with the Department of Energy.