HL Deb 11 December 1984 vol 458 cc266-7WA
Lord Kennet

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What were the results of the recent session of the Soviet/British Maritime Co-operation Commission; what is (a) the money value and (b) the volume of goods carried by sea between the countries; which are the ports called at in each country; how many British and how many Soviet ships engage in the trade, and how many voyages a year do they make.

Lord Brabazon of Tara

The annual meeting of the Anglo/Soviet Joint Maritime Commission, which took place in Moscow between 14th and 16th November, discussed a wide range of bilateral and multilateral shipping issues. The principal results were that the Commission:

  1. (i) welcomed the signing of a further commercial agreement between the British and Soviet lines in the bilateral joint liner trades;
  2. (ii) established a working party to consider ways of increasing the opportunities for United Kingdom flag vessels in trades not covered by the existing commercial agreements;
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  4. (iii) noted the latest reductions in capacity made by the Soviet cruise operators in the British market and agreed that further talks should be held between the commercial parties concerning the 1986 cruise programmes; and
  5. (iv) agreed that it was important to resolve the problems that existed on the liner routes between the Community and the Far East and East Africa.

The value and volume of seaborne trade between the United Kingdom and the USSR in 1983 was £1,111m and 4.4m tonnes. A large number of United Kingdom and USSR ports are engaged in this trade. The principal ports are Tilbury, Hull, Ellesmere Port, Leningrad and Riga.

One British flag vessel and two Soviet flag vessels are engaged in the joint liner service. Outside the liner service, vessels are employed on an ad hoc basis and in recent years these have predominantly been Soviet and other foreign flag vessels.