HC Deb 21 October 1987 vol 120 cc813-4W
Mr. John Marshall

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster how many representations have been made to the Russian authorities during the past four years about their violations of international postal conventions.

Mr. Butcher

As I said in reply to a question from my hon. Friend on 20 July, at columns85–86, the Post Office and my officials take every opportunity to express concern to Soviet postal authorities in international postal forums about the non-delivery of mail addressed to Soviet citizens. Since the UPU Congress in July 1984, United Kingdom delegates at international postal meetings have made such representations at least once a year. Moreover, the United Kingdom delegation to the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe review in Vienna raised this issue

Members of the Monopolies and Mergers Commission as at 16 October 1987 and relevant qualifications
Name Position Relevant Qualifications
Sir Godfray Le Quesne, QC Chairman Lawyer
Mr. H. H. Hunt Deputy Chairman Management Consultant
Mr. D. G. Richards Deputy Chairman Chartered Accountant
Mr. R. G. Smethurst Deputy Chairman Economist
Sir James Ackers Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. C. C. Baillieu Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. F. E. Bonner, CBE Member Nationalised industry (management)
Mr. L. Britz Member Trade unionist
Mr. M. B. Bunting Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. K. S. Carmichael, CBE Member Chartered Accountant
Sir Robert Clayton, CBE Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. P. H. Dean Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. A. Ferry, MBE Member Trade unionist
Mr. P. S. G. Flint Member Lawyer in industry
Mr. D. G. Goyder Member Solicitor
Miss A. M. Head Member Unit trusts (management)
Mr. J. D. Keir, QC Member Lawyer in industry
Mr. L. Kelly Member Industrialist (management)
Mr. M. S. Lipworth Member Barrister and Insurance services
Prof. S. C. Littlechild Member Economist
Miss P. K. R. Mann Member Senior manager (advertising)
Mr. S. McDowell, CBE Member Economist
Mr. L. A. Mills Member Trade unionist
Mr. B. C. Owens Member Industrialist (management)

three times between November last year and May 1987, and my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs referred to it in his speech in the same forum last December.

Individual cases concerning particular items are dealt with by the Post Office by means of standard international inquiry forms, followed, if necessary. by a letter raising a specific point.

Mr. John Marshall

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster how many complaints the Post Office has received in the past year about the non-delivery of mail in Russia; and in how many cases the Post Office has paid compensation to the complainants.

Mr. Butcher

This is a matter for the Post Office. However, I understand that in the year from October 1986 to September 1987 the Post Office received 1,026 inquiries about mail to the Soviet Union and paid compensation in 207 cases.