HC Deb 03 June 1937 vol 324 cc1161-3
38. Sir Nicholas Grattan-Doyle

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the mischief which the increasing surfeit of gold production is causing to commerce, pending absorption by the automatic expansion of international trade, he will confer with the Government of the United States of America with the object of offering jointly to help the Chinese Government to establish a Gold Standard and currency to replace the Chinese silver currency gold to the United States of America?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Sir John Simon)

The Chinese Government has not expressed any desire to establish a Gold Standard in that country, and in the circumstances my hon. Friend's suggestion does not appear to be practicable.

41. Mr. Craven-Ellis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will give the same assurance to the House which was given by his predecessor to the effect that the country will not return to the Gold Standard system until he is satisfied that the causes which brought about the downfall of the Gold Standard in 1931 are removed and not likely to recur; and, in" view of the great concern of industry and those engaged therein regarding the monetary system, will he consider holding an impartial inquiry before any alteration in the present system is contemplated?

Sir J. Simon

The conditions necessary before a return to the Gold Standard would be possible have been clearly indicated in previous declarations by my predecessor which, of course, continue to represent the policy of the Government on that subject. In reply to the second part of the question, I cannot give any undertaking of the kind suggested.

Mr. Craven-Ellis

Does the right hon. Gentleman not think it would be desirable to have such an inquiry?

Sir J. Simon

I can assure my hon. Friend that this is one of those difficult subjects which are constantly under review.

Mr. Emmott

Does my right hon. Friend not consider that it is in fact extremely desirable that sterling should be linked with gold as soon as the conditions to which he referred are restored?

Mr. Shinwell

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the concern in industrial and trading circles is to secure control in the first place of the Bank of England?

Sir J. Simon

None of these important matters can be dealt with in reply to supplementary questions.

Mr. Boothby

Has not the right hon. Gentleman already quite adequate control of the Bank of England?