Associated British Ports (No. 2) Bill (By Order)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 7:55 pm on 23rd June 1988.

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Photo of Dennis Skinner Dennis Skinner Member, Labour Party National Executive Committee, Vice-Chair, Labour Party 7:55 pm, 23rd June 1988

Before my hon. Friend leaves that point, I draw his attention to another important matter. We are running a balance of payments deficit this year of about £10,000 million. There is a real crisis because invisibles have been run down from £700 million per month to £400 million per month, which will add to the problem. There will be a balance of payments crisis, but we have a Government whose supporters promote Bills such as this with a view to importing South African coal from Rotterdam which will have Dutch labels stuck on it. We are going to have a balance of payments problem and every tonne that is imported will increase the problem. Every barrel of oil that is lost in the ensuing years will make the problem worse, yet we have a Prime Minister who talks about economic boom times being ahead. The Bill must be stopped because it will add to the problems that we already have.