HC Deb 24 March 1936 vol 310 cc1027-8

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that under the Anglo-Italian Trade and Payments Agreement there was, on 5th February, £1,386,740 outstanding in this country to the credit of Italian exporters, whereas on 4th March there was £1,280,073 outstanding, while during the same period the total transfer into sterling for payment to United Kingdom creditors in Italy was, respectively, £3,730,660 and £3,798,620; and whether he will take steps to see that no transfers are made from this country which will lessen the amount of sterling available for British creditors?


I am aware of the figures to which the hon. Member refers. The difference between the amount transferred to Italian exporters in the period 5th February-4th March, 1936, under the Anglo-Italian Payments Agreement, and the amount transferred to United Kingdom exporters under the Agreement in the same period is approximately represented by a corresponding increase in the balance available in the Sterling Account for payment to United Kingdom exporters. This balance has under the arrangements agreed with the Italian authorities to be used by them for payments to United Kingdom exporters in accordance with the terms of the Payments Agreement.


Is the right hon. Gentleman satisfied with the working of this agreement?


That is a matter of opinion.