HC Deb 22 February 1938 vol 332 cc190-1
47. Mr. Liddall

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether holders of German medium and long-term obligations have been consulted, and by whom, in respect of a committee's negotiations for prolonging the default under the 1934 agreement; if they have not been consulted will he state the authority by which this committee has been empowered to accept terms of any kind on behalf of the holders as distinct from the representatives of those bond-selling firms who sold the bonds to British private investors; and will he request a suitable and independent public body to call a meeting of these scattered private holders in order to ascertain their wishes?

Sir J. Simon

The committee of British long-term and medium-term creditors of Germany was formed on 12th June, 1933, and consists of the following members:

Mr. E. H. Lever, Chairman,

The Earl of Bessborough,

Sir William Elderton,

Mr. R. S. Guinness,

Mr. J. H. Clifford Johnston,

Sir O. E. Niemeyer.

The Association of Investment Trusts and the British Insurance Association are represented on the committee and of its six members, four, including the chairman, are members of the Council of Foreign Bondholders. The committee has continuously, and in my opinion successfully, represented the interests of all the bondholders for the last five years. It has no legal power to bind the bondholders, but it is widely representative of them and any fresh arrangement which it may feel able to recommend to them would have the support of His Majesty's Government. In these circumstances I am satisfied that it would not be desirable to take the action suggested by my hon. Friend.

Mr. G. Griffiths

Was this committee appointed by Herr Hitler?

Back to