HC Deb 24 November 1936 vol 318 cc210-1
36. Major-General Sir ALFRED KNOX

asked the President of the Board of Trade what was the balance of payments still due from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on 31st December, 1935, for goods supplied from Great Britain?


On 31st December, 1935, a sum of approximately £2,000,000 still remained to be paid in respect of goods consigned from the United Kingdom to the Soviet Union.


May we take it that the right hon. Gentleman has no fear whatever that these payments will be met?


I understand that about four-fifths of these outstanding claims have already been paid off.

54. Sir A. KNOX

asked the President of the Board of Trade why, as Great Britain has purchased from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in the 14 years 1922–35 goods to the value of £298,000,000 while the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics has only purchased from us £66,000,000 worth of United Kingdom products and £60,000,000 worth of re-exports, and has therefore a trade balance of £172,000,000, was it necessary to give the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics what is in effect a five year loan of 10,000,000 in order to increase her purchases in this country?


Since 1934 the balance of payments between the United Kingdom and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics has been regulated by the arrangements contained in the Schedule to the Temporary Commercial Agreement of 16th February, 1934. In these circumstances, statistics going back to 1922 would not seem to be relevant to the arrangement, to which my hon. and gallant Friend refers, for stimulating the export to Russia of United Kingdom manufactures.


Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that by giving this loan of £10,000,000 he is really financing the arming of Spanish Reds and propaganda against this country?

55. Mr. DAY

asked the President of the Board of Trade the value and particulars of exports of manufactured goods to Soviet Russia for the 12 months ended to the last available date?


As the answer is in the form of a tabular statement I will, with the hon. Member's permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether the majority of those exports have not been paid for?

Following is the answer:

The following statement shows the total declared value of exports of United Kingdom goods classified in the trade returns as wholly or mainly manufactured which were consigned to the Soviet Union during the year 1935.

Declared Value.
Description. £'000.
Total 3,098
of which
Ferro-alloys 483
Other iron and steel and manufactures thereof 854
Unwrought nickel 348
Other non-ferrous metals and manufactures thereof 126
Machine tools (metal-working) 575
Other machinery and parts thereof 332
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