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Coal Industry

Volume 281: debated on Wednesday 17 July 1996

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To ask the President of the Board of Trade what is the current level of coal stocks in the United Kingdom; and what is the minimum level of stock set by his Department. [37630]

Latest available data are for the end of April 1996 when stocks of coal totalled 12.7 million tonnes of which stocks held by electricity generators totalled 6.2 million tonnes, stocks at coke ovens totalled 1.2 million tonnes, and stocks at collieries and opencast sites totalled 5.3 million tonnes.I am currently reviewing the level of fossil fuel stocks to be held by generators.

To ask the President of the Board of Trade what financial assistance he will make available to recover underground plant and machinery at those collieries which closed when Coal Investment ceased to trade. [37631]

This is a matter for the owners of the plant and equipment, who should contact the Coal Authority or the new licensees at those collieries which have been assigned or relicensed.