asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport whether he authorised the advertised salvage sale of goods from ex-steamship "Teddington," at Grimsby on 12th and 13th March, which included wrapping and waxed paper, cycles, motor and cycle parts, curtain nets, brassware and other priority goods; and what control did he exercise over buyers or sellers or the disposal and future use of these various products, which are in short supply?
This sale was arranged on behalf of the War Risks Insurance Office and other insurers of the goods, in accordance with the normal procedure adopted by underwriters to dispose of salvaged goods which have become their property under insurance contracts. Certain goods were withdrawn from the sale and taken over by the Ministry of Food. The remainder were offered for sale subject to the current Regulations governing the purchase and sale of such goods.
While thanking my hon. Friend for the reply which he has given, may I ask whether he does not think it is time to overhaul the organisation regarding salvage sales? Would it not be wise to have a consultation with the Board of Trade, with a view to keeping off the market many of the valuable priority goods?
There were consultations with all the other Government Departments, not only about the general principle but about this particular sale. They were asked whether any of the goods should be kept out of the sale. No doubt my hon. Friend will remember that coupons have to be surrendered for all rationed goods.