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Oil Imports (Sources)

Volume 443: debated on Thursday 30 October 1947

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89.

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what is the percentage of oil purchased from dollar sources, in relation to the whole of our imports for the year ended 30th June, 1947.

During the year ended 30th June, 1947, imports of crude oil and finished products from dollar sources amounted to about 49 per cent. of the total oil imports into the United Kingdom. In the case of motor spirit, as I stated last night, the proportion is 62 per cent.

90.

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what percentage of the United Kingdom total requirements of oil he estimates could be purchased in Abadan, Persia, for payment in sterling; and whether he will state the reason for not effecting such purchases.

The production of oil at Abadan, together with that of other British-controlled refineries, has to be considered in relation to the needs of the whole sterling area and of our export trade, and not merely in relation to the needs of this country. If more oil from Abadan were brought to this country, this would leave a deficit in another part of the sterling area which would have to be made up with oil from dollar sources. In planning actual shipments of oil, the oil companies naturally aim at meeting the various demands for their products with the minimum over-all movement of oil.