HC Deb 05 December 1938 vol 342 cc856-7
68. Mr. W. Roberts

asked the President of the Board of Trade the percentage of the total imports of mercury into this country coming from Spain during the current year; and the percentage carried in British ships?

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade (Mr. Cross)

Of the total quantity of mercury imported into the United Kingdom during the 10 months ended October, 1938, 89 per cent was registered as consigned from Spain. I am unable to state what proportion was carried in British ships.

Mr. Roberts

In view of the fact that a very high proportion of the mercury required for rearmament comes from Spain, will the hon. Gentleman inform other Departments when any question of granting belligerent rights is being considered?

Lieut.-Commander Fletcher

Will the hon. Gentleman ask the President of the Board of Trade to take into consideration the desirability of all cargoes ordered by the British Government being carried in British bottoms?

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