HC Deb 11 April 1928 vol 162 cc1190-1

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the German custom house at Emmerich, on the Rhine, is now in charge of either the French or the Belgians; whether British-owned goods either entering or leaving Germany by the Rhine, and having to pass this frontier custom house, have to pay duties to the German authorities, and, in addition, duties to the French and Belgian authorities; and if he will state what action his Department has taken in order to protect the rights of British nationals trading with Germany at the present time?

Lieut.-Colonel BUCKLEY

I have been asked to reply. The Custom House at Emmerich is in charge of the Franco-Belgian authorities. Goods imported into the occupied territory by way of the Rhine pay import duty to the Franco-Belgian authorities only, at Emmerich or other Rhine port, in accordance with the Regulations issued by the Franco-Belgian authorities. All goods exported from the occupied territory by the Rhine are subject to export duty, unless they are free of export licence requirement, and such export duty has to be paid only to the Franco-Belgian authorities on the issue of the export licence. As regards the last part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the statement by the President. of the Board of Trade in this House on the 28th March.

Captain BENN

Did not the President of the Board of Trade state that, owing to the condition of affairs in the occupied territory, trade had vanished?