Old Vessels (Transfer)

Oral Answers to Questions — Shipping – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 8th July 1946.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence , Orkney and Shetland 12:00 am, 8th July 1946

asked the Minister of Transport whether he is aware that Norwegian and other allied ship-owners are permitted to sell their old vessels to other than their own nationals; that they are thus able to finance the purchase of modern vessels, including vessels owned by the Minister himself; and whether British shipowners will be placed is a position not less favourable.

Photo of Mr Alfred Barnes Mr Alfred Barnes , East Ham South

I am aware that sale of ships to other flags is to some extent permitted by certain Allied maritime countries and that, in normal circumstances, it is generally regarded as desirable to permit such sales in order to assist in maintaining the efficiency of merchant fleets and to encourage new building. For the time being, I regret that our own tonnage resources are not Sufficient to permit of any general freedom of transfer of serviceable ships from the United Kingdom register. I am anxious, nevertheless, not to restrict freedom of transfer beyond the necessities imposed by my responsibility for ensuring adequate tonnage for national requirements, and, subject to this overriding consideration, applications under the Ships and Aircraft (Transfer Restriction) Act for permission to transfer United Kingdom ships abroad are considered on their merits.