asked the Secretary of State for Defence what proposals he has received from the Falkland Islands Government for the use of Royal Naval Lighter 0852 for supplying fuel to vessels using Port Stanley; what examination he has made of the commercial advantages of so doing; and if he will make a statement.
A proposal to use the Royal Navy fuel depot at Port Stanley and its associated lighter to refuel visiting vessels was raised by His Excellency the Governor of the Falkland Islands at the beginning of this year. My hon. Friend also raised the proposal by letter with my right hon. Friend on the former's return from a visit to the Falkland Islands. The scope for such use of the fuel depot is dependent upon the future of the depot, which will be surplus to Royal Navy requirements following the planned paying off of HMS "Endurance" next spring. The matter is under consideration, and I shall write to my hon. Friend when the position is clearer.