HC Deb 05 November 1936 vol 317 cc239-40

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that out of £41,000,000 of outstanding League of Nations loans £37,000,000 are now in default; will he state the reasons why the British economic experts, then attached to the League of Nations, recommended the issues for public subscription in Britain without having provided against the possibility of the international exchange required for interest and sinking funds not being obtainable; and whether His Majesty's Government continue to accept advice from these same experts?


The figures given by my hon. Friend exclude the League Loan for Austria which was converted or paid off in 1934–35. If that loan is included, the position is that full service is being, paid on £23,300,000 or 38 per cent. of the whole and, after negotiations with representatives of the bondholders, reduced payments are being made on the remainder. The responsibility for agreeing that these loans should be issued with the approval of the League of Nations rested with the League Council as a whole, and the responsibility for permitting issues in London with the Governments in power in this country when the issues were made.


Can my right hon. Friend say whether Sir Arthur Salter was one of the experts who advised about the issue of these League of Nations loans?


Perhaps my hon. Friend will put that question down.