HC Deb 22 October 1993 vol 230 c399W
Sir Peter Emery

To ask the President of the Board of Trade if he will make a statement on what progress has been made by the Government on their policies announced in their White Paper on coal.

Mr. Eggar

As I indicated in my statement on 20 October,Official Report, columns 277–78, we have announced our intention that British Coal's mining assets should be offered for sale in five regional packages; we have issued two consultation papers covering the pensions and concessionary fuel regimes after privatisation; we expect shortly to receive the comprehensive advice of the Health and Safety Commission on all aspects of the post-privatisation safety regime; we are repealing the Coal Mines Regulation Act 1908 with effect from 20 November; Dr. Martin Holdgate has agreed to become chairman of the Energy Advisory Panel; British Coal has offered for licence 20 pits that it does not wish to keep in production and is currently considering 12 tenders for seven of those pits; and, subject to EC clearance, we are offering a subsidy to British Coal in support of additional sales from Ellington colliery to British Alcan's power station at Lynemouth.