§ 4. Mr. FOREMAN
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether any import restrictions exist to influence prices of manufactured articles of personal attire and of household use?
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
Certain articles of personal attire and of household use do figure on the list of restricted imports. In these and other cases, however, the decisions reached were designed to avoid on the one side a flood of imports which would have been damaging to producers in this country, and, on the other, shortage of available supplies, accompanied by un- 11 reasonable prices. In considering whether any licences should be granted exceptionally in any particular case, the question of whether prices were reasonable would certainly be taken into account.
§ Mr. FRANCE
Will the Government take into consideration the effect that these restrictions on imports have upon the cost of living and the encouragement they give to profiteering in this country?
§ 5. Mr. FOREMAN
asked the President of the Board of Trade if, in view of the existing high prices, he will state whether there is any shortage of raw material in respect of manufactured articles of personal attire and of household use?
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
The present high level of prices is due to a number of causes which may vary in the case of different articles. Shortage of raw materials is, no doubt, a contributory cause in many cases.
§ 9. Mr. RAMSDEN
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in view of the high prices charged to the public of manufactured articles in every-day personal use, he will select a certain number of these articles and analyse the profit derived by those who handle them at the various stages, so that the consumer may understand the reasons for the outlay he has to make?
12. Mr. J. JONES
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he can now state if it is intended to set up a Committee to inquire into the price of clothing, drapery, etc.?
14. Major NEWMAN
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in view of the anxiety of the general public at the continued high level of prices for the necessaries of life, other than articles of food, he will expedite and publish at the earliest moment the findings of an expert inquiry that is being conducted by the Board of Trade as to the proportion in the present cost of such articles as clothing and boots which can be attributed to the rise in wool, leather, and other raw material, to profits, and to the advance in wages, respectively?
§ 16. Mr. LAMBERT
asked the President of the Board of Trade if his Department 12 have decided whether the present prices demanded for boots and clothes is justified by the cost of production; and, if the prices are not justified, what steps are proposed to be taken to check profiteering in these articles of necessity?