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Coking Coal

Volume 973: debated on Thursday 8 November 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Energy what is the current differential between the price of United Kingdom coking coal at the pit head and imported coking coal at English ports.

The average price of NCB coking coal at the pithead is currently £40·90 per tonne. The average price of third country coking coal imported at English ports is at present £30·37 per tonne.

asked the Secretary of State for Energy if he will indicate the number of United Kingdom mines producing coking coal, specifying whether deep mine or opencast.

I understand that at the present time there are 57 collieries producing coking coal for the coke ovens

There are 21 officers in the Department of Energy who have had more than five years' experience of working in a publicly-quoted, fully integrated oil company. The details are as follows:market; and there are six opencast sites the output of which includes coking coal.In addition, there are four collieries capable of producing coking coal to prepared standards but which, for reasons of adverse market conditions, are not currently producing and supplying their output to coke ovens. Instead, their output is being prepared as steam-raising smalls for the industrial market.

asked the Secretary of State for Energy what, of the total United Kingdom coking coal available, is the percentage of the specification required by United Kingdom steel manufacturers.

I have been asked to reply.In 1978 virtually all the available United Kingdom coking coal went to the BSC, which imported only 14 per cent. of its requirements. The Corporation recently announced that for 1979 it would be increasing the percentage of imported coking coal to 24 per cent. for operational and cost reasons. I have placed in the Library a copy of the press notice issued by BSC.