HL Deb 08 March 1988 vol 494 cc689-90WA
Lord Kennet

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they are aware of any British companies intending to commence mining the sea-bed.

The Secretary of State for Trade and industry (Lord Young of Graffham)

The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry issued an exploration licence in 1984 under The Deep Sea Mining (Temporary Provisions) Act, 1981, to the Kennecott Consortium in which three British companies, British Petroleum. Rio Tinto Zinc Corporation plc, and Consolidated Gold Fields plc, have an interest. No British company has indicated an intention to commence sea-bed mining at the present time and no application has been received for a licence to undertake exploitation activity.