asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies (1) what has been the cost to date of the geological survey carried out in the Leeward Islands and around the coast of these islands with a view to discovering deposits of oil; and on what date the decision was taken to proceed immediately with under-water boring for oil;
(2) whether he has now completed his inquiries into the immediate plans of the Governor of the Leeward Islands to proceed with under-water boring for oil along the coast of these islands; what will be the approximate cost of this project each year for the next five years; and when boring is to commence.
Mr. Creech Jones:
I fear that there is some misunderstanding on this matter. No geological survey of the Leeward Islands has been or is as yet being carried out. The Legislative Council of St. Kitts-Nevis urged last October that a survey should take place with special emphasis on the possible presence of oil. The Governor has been in touch with the Director of Geological Survey in British Guiana regarding this matter, and the situation in these islands will be related to other geological work to be done in the region. I am advised, however, that it is unlikely that the geological structure of the Islands is favourable for the accumulation of oil.
While I fail to see the connection between oil and water, may I ask the Colonial Secretary to make it clear that there are no plans to proceed with underwater boring for oil, that there is no geological survey, and that the plan exists only in the imagination of the Governor?