§ The Secretary of State for India (Mr. Amery
I beg to move,That an humble Address be presented to His Majesty in pursuance of the provisions of Section 309 of the Government of India Act, 1261 1935. praying that the Government of India (Adaptation of Acts of Parliament) (Amendment) Order, 1942, be made in the form of the draft laid before Parliament.
§ Earl Winterton (Horsham and Worthin)
The right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the House promised that we would be given an explanation.
§ Mr. Amery
I think that perhaps the House would like to have a few words of explanation of the purpose of this Order. The purpose of the Motion is to prolong for another 12 months the exemption of Burma from duties under the 1932 Act. That exemption has been continued for some time now, pending the arranging of the trade treaty between this country and Burma. It was postponed in the first instance in order to enable a trade treaty to be fixed up between Burma and India. When that had taken place the situation changed to such an extent that in view of all the restrictions and control on trade, I came to this House just a year ago to point out that a trade agreement could hardly be made under the existing conditions, and I asked for promulgation and exemption for another 12 months. Soon after that there occurred the events with which we are all familiar and which have put a complete end to all trade with Burma and, consequently, to any value in a trade agreement. But, on the other hand, I am sure the House does not wish to rule out of the picture the prospect of the re-occupation of Burma in the course of the next 12 months. If and to whatever extent that does take place, it may well prove that products from Burma will be able to be sent to this country at very short notice and, obviously, it would be extremely inconvenient if they were unnecessarily subject to duty or if at such moment the House suddenly had to be asked to impose entirely fresh legislation dealing with Burma trade. For these reasons it has been thought most convenient to maintain this exemption for another 12 months in view of the possibility of some trade with Burma reopening during that period. If within 12 months the situation should still be what it is, then I will come back to the House for a further extension of this exemption.
§ Earl Winterton
I cannot speak again, as I have exhausted my right to speak, but may I ask my right hon. Friend to be good enough in future, when bringing 1262 forward these Orders, to give some explanation? If I had not risen just now, this Order would have gone through without any explanation.
§ Question put, and agreed to.
That an humble Address be presented to His Majesty in pursuance of the provisions of Section 309 of the Government of India Act, 1935, praying that the Government of India (Adaptation of Acts of Parliament) (Amendment) Order, 1942, be made in the form of the draft laid before Parliament.
To be presented by Privy Councillors or Members of His Majesty's Household.