21. Mr. David Adams
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he will state the year on whose exports of 1208 sugar the present system of special preference to the producing Colonies was fixed; and whether, since the position of production has changed considerably as between the Colonies concerned, he will consider a change in the system of allotment?
Mr. M. MacDonald
When the special certificate preference was introduced in 1932 in order to maintain the then existing Colonial sugar industry the allocation of quotas was made on the basis of the average exports in the three years 1928–30. In 1934 the scheme was somewhat modified and revised quotas were fixed which took account both of the original quotas and of increases in exports which had taken place in the interval. I do not think that the present is an opportune time to review these quotas.
Does the Minister not agree that certain of the Colonies appear to be adversely affected at present?
I think there certainly would have been a case for considering this question in peace-time, but the war has so altered conditions there, both as regards production and marketing, that I think this is not the time to reconsider it.