HC Deb 02 June 1937 vol 324 cc997-8
23. Sir R. Rankin

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether it is still the intention of the Japanese Admiralty to build battleships with guns exceeding 15-inch calibre; and whether any representations on this subject have been made during the past three months?

Mr. Cooper

As the Washington and London (193o) Naval Treaties are no longer in force, and as Japan is not a party to the London Naval Treaty of 1936, no exchange of information now takes place between Japan and this country. His Majesty's Government have not, therefore, been informed of the Japanese intentions with regard to battleship construction. Since their refusal at the end of March to accept the 14-inch gun limitation, no further representations on this subject have been made to the Japanese Government.

Mr. Thorne

Does not the right hon. Gentleman think that the guns on our ships are just as good as the guns on Japanese ships?