HC Deb 12 December 1939 vol 355 cc1002-3
20. Mr. G. Strauss

asked the Minister of Economic Warfare whether he can give this House any information about the trade agreement between Germany and Rumania; and what steps His Majesty's Government have taken to divert Rumanian exports to this country?

Mr. Cross

A protocol renewing the economic agreement of last March between Germany and Rumania was signed on the 29th of September. The quotas of goods to be exchanged under the agreement are stated to be approximately equivalent to those for the preceding year with a proportionate increase to cover Rumanian trade with Bohemia and Moravia. Further commercial negotiations are reported to have been initiated in Bucharest last month by Herr Clodius, but so far as my information goes no result has yet been reached. As regards the second part of the question, I regret that it would not be in the public interest to indicate the measures which His Majesty's Government have taken. I can, however, assure the hon. Member that the importance of this aspect of economic warfare is not being neglected.

Mr. Shinwell

Are we to take that answer as indicating that, as yet, the Government have not succeeded in diverting Rumanian goods from Germany to this country?

Mr. Cross

I could not accept the suggestion that that is what my answer indicates.

Mr. V. Adams

Can the Minister say whether the quota of oil exports from Rumania to Germany has not yet been altered?

Mr. Cross

No, Sir, I do not think I could give the hon. Member any information on that point. There is, as far as I am aware, no quota which could be said physically to relate to oil. I think it relates rather to certain foreign exchange considerations.

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