HC Deb 05 May 1924 vol 173 c27
47. Sir W. de FRECE

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he if aware that most of the raw cotton from East Africa is now being bought by Japan; and whether the British taxpayer will be asked to provide further large sums of money for the purpose of benefiting trade which is directly in competition with this country?


There are some Japanese buyers of cotton in Uganda, but no direct shipments are made to Japan. Of the cotton which is consigned to India (rather more than half the total crop) some certainly goes on to Japan, but I should like to know on what figures the hon. Member bases his statement that most of the crop goes to Japan. It is not possible in a country in which, by international convention, there is complete freedom of trade to limit the destination of cotton, nor is it desirable to restrict the grower's freedom to sell his cotton to the best advantage. If foreign users of this type of cotton buy from East Africa, there is more of the same type available for Lancashire from other sources.

Sir W. de FRECE

With reference to the first part of the question, will the right hon. Gentleman make inquiries from the Manchester Chamber of Commerce?


No. We have much more official and reliable information than that can possibly be, and the answer Which I have given is based on it.