HC Deb 06 May 1930 vol 238 cc747-8
42. Lieut.-Colonel Sir FREDERICK HALL

asked the President of the Board of Trade in which of the trades in this country at present subject to Safeguarding Duties the articles produced have been increased in price to the public owing to the existence of the duties; and how far such increase, if any, has been counterbalanced by the payment of more wages?


Definite information as to the price movements of goods of the kinds in question is available only in respect of gloves and gas mantles, and as to these I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the answers given to the hon. and gallant Member for Yeovil (Major Davies) and the hon. Member for Lancaster (Mr. Ramsbotham) on the 4th and 7th April, respectively, of which I am sending him copies. I have no information as to the total amount of wages in either of these industries.


Is it not the general policy of Members of the Government to circulate reports in the case of safeguarded industries of the increase that has taken place in the cost to the consumer, and will the right hon. Gentleman substantiate this statement by giving a categorical reply to the question I have put on the Paper?


No, I can only speak for the Board of Trade, and in all these replies we give the information, I trust, with complete impartiality. As regards the two cases, in regard to gloves, the previous reply was that there has been a fall in price which has marched with the general fall in prices, whereas in the case of gas mantles the price to the consumer has actually increased.


I agree with the reply of the right hon. Gentleman as far as the Board of Trade is concerned, but is he aware of the general statements which are made by supporters of his Government as to the effect of which I have called attention?

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