§ 20. Mr. J. GRIFFITHS
asked the Secretary for Mines whether there are any negotiations now proceeding between his Department and the royalty owners in regard to the proposed legislation to unify the ownership of royalties; what are the organisations acting for the royalty owners; and whether it is proposed to settle the terms of the purchase of the royalty rights by the State before the proposed legislation is submitted to Parliament?
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
Discussions have taken place and will continue to take place between representatives of His Majesty's Government and of the Mineral Owners' Joint Committee in regard to the proposed unification of coal royalties. It is obviously advantageous with these as with any other legislative proposals that they should command the widest possible measure of agreement, and this applies to the terms of purchase as to other questions. But I need hardly remind the hon. Member when he speaks of "settling" these terms, that that is a matter for Parliament.
§ Mr. GRIFFITHS
Can the hon. and gallant Gentleman state the names of the organisations with which these consultations are taking place; and can his answer be construed as an assurance that no price will be fixed until the matter comes before this House?
§ Mr. SHINWELL
Are we to understand that no agreement has yet been reached with the mineral royalty owners as to the purchase terms