HC Deb 22 September 1909 vol 11 cc405-6

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the recent increase in the United States tariff took effect upon British goods the moment the Bill was signed, that German goods will not pay the advance till February, nor Spanish, Portuguese, and Dutch till August next year; and that upon French goods six months' notice, antedated to April last, has been given; and whether he has made, or proposes to make, any protest against such preferences in the interest of British manufacturers?


No, Sir. The statement in the question is not correct. With the exception of spirits and one or two articles of no importance to British manufacturers, which were included in reciprocal agreements requiring notice of termination of varying lengths, the new rates came into simultaneous operation, and all British goods imported into the United States are at present subject to the same rates of Customs duty as those imported from the other countries named in the question. With reference to the temporary continuance of the discrimination against British spirits, I beg to refer the hon. Member to the replies given by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs to the questions addressed to him on 2nd and 13th September by the hon. Member for Worcester, to which I cannot add anything.


Is it not the fact that in the case of lace goods from Nottingham our manufacturers have to pay a higher rate to go to America than Germany and one or two other countries?


That is a question which is out of my jurisdiction.