§ 61. Mr. MARSHALL STEVENS
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport whether the Ministry is formulating information to enable the Railway Rates Tribunal to efficiently carry out the requirements of the Railways Act, 1921, and, if so, of what character; and whether the statistical department of the Ministry will obtain the separate costs to the railway companies of station and service terminals, of cartage, of warehouses, of docks, harbours, hotels and other various facilities provided by railway companies, without which information it is impossible for the tribunal to accurately fix standard rates for conveyance upon the railway, which is the only monopoly service enjoyed by railway companies?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of TRANSPORT (Mr. Neal)
As the answer is somewhat long, I will, if I may, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.
§ Following is tier answer:
§ In addition to the annual railway returns, which embrace both accounts and statistics, the Ministry of Transport issues a monthly volume of railway statistics, and has recently issued a volume giving the tonnage, gross receipts and receipts per ton per mile for a large number of selected commodities. Returns are also obtained relating to the cost of working at representative goods depots and marshalling yards, and to the cost of cartage at selected stations.689
§ My hon. Friend will agree that all these returns will be of very material assistance to the Rates Tribunal, and if that tribunal requires additional information to facilitate its task, I shall endeavour to obtain and furnish it.
§ As regards docks, hotels and other ancillary businesses, I asked the railway companies, shortly after the passing of the Railways Act, 1921, to formulate proposals for a revised compilation of the statutory accounts which, among other things, would result in a more accurate apportionment of the receipts and expenditure proper to such businesses.