HC Deb 02 June 1930 vol 239 cc1734-6
34. Lieut.-Colonel Sir A. LAMBERT WARD

asked the Secretary to the Overseas Trade Department whether the order for three and-a half millions of pairs of boots and shoes offered by the Soviet Delegation to Northampton firms has yet been accepted by them; and, if so, will he state the quantities already shipped to Russia in part execution of the order?


asked the Secretary to the Overseas Trade Department whether, seeing that Northampton firms have been unable to secure the Soviet Delegation's order for 3,500,000 pairs of boots and shoes, he will state what steps he is taking or has taken to get this Russian order placed with boot and shoe manufacturers in other parts of the Kingdom?

38. Mr. GOULD

asked the Secretary to the Overseas Trade Department whether any progress has been made in regard to the large boot contract from Russia; what is its nature; and when may work be expected from it?

Mr. GILLETT (Secretary, Overseas Trade Department)

I hays no further information upon this matter than that which I gave to the hon. Member for Lewisham East (Sir A. Pownall) on the 24th February. As hon. Members are aware the foreign trade of the Soviet Union is a monopoly of that Government; His Majesty's Government are in touch with the trade representative in London of the Soviet Union, who is empowered to place orders here on behalf of his Government whether for boots or other commodities.


Can the hon. Gentleman say whether it was on account of the short-term credit that the Department were prepared to grant that led to the cancellation of this order?


Is it not the fact that this order was placed when the late Government was in office?


No orders have been placed. I did not hear the order mentioned until about two months ago. At that time I met the representatives of the boot and shoe industry and a difficulty of getting the business was connected with the question of extended credit.


Will the hon. Member keep in touch with the situation as it develops and see whether it is not possible to obtain this order through his office?


I understand that one of his Majesty's Ministers is at present in touch with the Soviet Government's representative on all questions.


Are we to understand that His Majesty's Government have no confidence in the Soviet Government?