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Austria (Coal)

Volume 154: debated on Monday 15 May 1922

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asked the Prime Minister whether he is aware of the difficulty experienced by Austria in obtaining a sufficient supply of coal to enable her industries to compete in the markets of the world; whether he is aware that her water power, if developed, would give her over 60 per cent, of the energy and heat she needs; and will he say if Austria will be given an equal opportunity with Russia to obtain the money needed to develop her water power under the Trade Facilities Acts or other method by which this country is to be asked to assist in the reconstruction of Russia?

I am afraid I cannot undertake to answer what is at present a hypothetical question. As the hon. and gallant Member will be aware, very considerable financial assistance has been given, both directly and indirectly, by this country to Austria?

What does the hon. Gentleman mean by calling it a hypothetical question? Is it the first part or the second part which is hypothetical?

There is a small element of hypothesis in the first part, and a large element in the second part.

Why is it there is so strong a demand in this House for action against Germany while Austria is never mentioned in terms of indemnity, but always in terms of help?