HC Deb 07 March 1944 vol 397 cc1871-2
52. Mr. Craven-Ellis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether consideration will be given to priority in liquidation to those holding National Savings Certificates if an undertaking to use the proceeds in the purchase of a newly-built house accompanies such application to repay.

Sir J. Anderson

No, Sir. Any holder of National Savings Certificates who is over seven years of age has a right to encash his certificates at any time, with the single exception that certificates of the £1 issue are not encashable within 90 days of the date of purchase. There can be no question of qualifying these encashment rights. It would be out of the question for the State to dishonour its loans by making their repayment subject to conditions not provided in the terms on which the loans were issued to the public.

Mr. Craven-Ellis

If the replacement of these savings certificates should, in fact, cause inflation, do the Government intend to take no action at all; and would it not be in the interest of the country for these people to spend the money in providing homes for themselves?

Sir J. Anderson

That is a hypothetical question. The Government intend to stand strictly by their obligations.

Mr. Graham White

Does the right hon. Gentleman's reply apply not merely to war certificates specified in the Question but to all Government loans?

Sir J. Anderson

It applies generally. The terms on which loans have been raised will he adhered to.