HC Deb 07 April 1930 vol 237 cc1748-9
76. Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs whether he is now in a position to make any statement about the new Australian tariffs and prohibitions on certain imports; and whether any representations were made to the Australian Government?


I have been asked to reply. My information generally confirms that which has appeared in the Press. A Resolution passed by the Commonwealth House of Representatives on the 3rd April imposed a surtax of 50 per cent. of the duty payable under the Tariff on certain scheduled goods. A Proclamation issued on the 4th April prohibited the importation of various goods on another schedule except under licence, but the Government have authorised the import annually of certain of these goods to the extent of 50 per cent. of the quantities imported during the 12 months ended 31st March last. Some goods appear on both these Schedules. Full details based on cabled information received by the High Commissioner for the Commonwealth of Australia in London will be published in the forthcoming issue of the "Board of Trade Journal." Goods exported from the countries of export prior to the 4th April are exempted from both Customs surtax and import licence requirement. The reply to the second part of the question is in the negative.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Can my hon. Friend say whether, in view of the very serious effect that this may have on British trade, any representations are to be made?


That matter is being considered by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.


Is that one of the matters he considered at the Geneva Tariff Conference?


No doubt my right hon. Friend will himself be prepared to make a statement.


Is this one of the first fruits of Empire Free Trade?