HC Deb 04 February 1985 vol 72 cc392-3W
Mr. Austin Mitchell

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he will publish in the Official Report a table comparing the increase in the trading deficit in (a) coal other than anthracite and (b) fuel oil in the first 11 months of 1984 compared with the same period in 1983, together with his estimate of the effect of this on the exchange rate and on the real cost of imports generally.

Mr. Channon

The trade balances for coal other than anthracite, and fuel oil are in the table. Estimates of the effects of changes in trade balances on exchange rates and imports costs cannot be meaningfully estimated.

Overseas Trade Statistics Basis
£ million, not seasonally adjusted
1983 1984 Increase in deficit between periods
Coal other than anthracite*
January to November -7 -413 406
Year as a whole -1 -469 468
Fuel Oil
January to November -669 -2,353 1,684
Year as a whole -722 -2,690 1,970
* SITC Division 32 less Subgroup 322.1.
† SITC Subgroup 334.4.