1 and 2. Lieut.-Colonel Sir F. HALL
asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) if he will state what actual cash payment has been made in respect 554 of the 50,000 £1 shares, constituting the nominal capital of the Products Corporation, Limited; what is the annual turnover of this firm and of the businesses which it has acquired; if he can state from what sources this company, with its small capital, derives the financial backing necessary to the successful carrying on of the business transactions in which it is involved;
(2) whether the business of the Products Corporation, Limited, has been established at the instigation of the German financier, Herr Stinnes, to continue the sale in this country of. German chemicals and other products, formerly carried on by firms which have been voluntarily dissolved because of their known German connections; and whether, having regard to the importance of making this country independent of Germany in regard to the supply of chemicals and other key products of which this corporation acts as agent for the Stinnes industrial group, he will institute an inquiry into the manner in which the firm came into being and the steps which it may be desirable to take to prevent German financiers obtaining a control of British markets in this secret manner?
§ The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of TRADE (Mr. Baldwin)
I would refer my hon. and gallant Friend to the answers given to him on this subject on the 9th May. The inquiries are not yet completed, and consequently I cannot at present make any statement.
Sir F. HALL
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that I have put this question down two or three times, and that I have always had the same reply? Is the Government desirous of giving information to the House and the country on these subjects? If so, let us know where we are.
§ Mr. BALDWIN
As I stated in my reply, inquiries are proceeding. They are very difficult matters upon which to get information.
Sir F. HALL
When does the right hon. Gentleman think that it will be possible to reply, and I will then put down a question?