HC Deb 23 March 1989 vol 149 c764W
Dr. Thomas

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what information he has as to the average level of Government subsidy per tonne of deep-mined coal each year since 1985 in each European Economic Community country and in the United States of America.

Mr. Michael Spicer

The Information requested is as follows. It has been obtained from European Commission publications. The United States of America does not provide financial support to its coal industry.

£/tonne1 2
1985 1986 19875
Belgium 22.0 35.6 58.1
France 37.6 46.4 49.6
FR Germany 6.0 24.2 58.1
Portugal4 6.9
Spain4 12.0
United Kingdom3 50 8.1 6.6

The Belgium and French coal industries are much smaller than those of FR Germany and the United Kingdom and are currently undergoing substantial contraction which distorts the aid figures. The figures for FR Germany in 1986 and 1987 also include Government aid for supplying coal and coke to its steel industry at world market prices.

1 It is not possible to make absolute comparisons between the figures from different Member State as the statistical basis may vary.

2 Figures for all countries represent aid for current production and inherited liabilities only. They do not include social security payments such as pension schemes and insurance contributions since these are not readily comparable.

3 United Kingdom figures are on a financial year basis for 1985–86, 1986–87 and 1987–88. The others are in calendar years.

4 Portuguese and Spanish data are not available prior to 1987.

5 1987 data are the latest published. 1988 figures are not yet available.

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