HC Deb 01 April 1941 vol 370 cc829-30
2. Sir Herbert Williams

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, when a letter is submitted to the Trading with the Enemy Branch of the Treasury and Board of Trade for approval, with a view to transmission abroad, and such approval is not given, the reasons for non-approval will be given if requested?

Mr. Lyttelton

Approval is withheld only if transmission appears to be contrary to the public interest. I can give no assurance that the specific reasons for non-approval will in every case be given.

Mr. Purbrick

Is not the Minister aware that if senders of such letters are not informed of where their fault lies they cannot remedy same nor prevent its recurrence?

Sir Irving Albery

Is it not generally the custom to give reasons for non-approval?

Mr. Lyttelton

It is customary, and normally it is so, but not always.

3. Sir H. Williams

asked the President of the Board of Trade under what Section of the Trading with the Enemy Act, 1939, or Regulations thereunder, does an insurance policy taken out in England by a British national on property situated in enemy territory become compulsorily frustrated, since insurers are claiming that such frustration relieves them from refunding to the insuree any proportion of the annual premium paid corresponding to the period from the frustration of the termination of the policy; and does he intend to permit such action to continue?

Mr. Lyttelton

I do not know whether or not the Question deals with a policy in favour of a British subject resident in enemy territory. In any event the matter would be one of the application of the law to private contracts, with which I cannot deal. I would refer my hon. Friend to the report of the Lord Chancellor's Law Revision Committee (Cmd. 6009) in which the effect of the doctrine of frustration of a contract in English law is examined.