HC Deb 14 March 1944 vol 398 cc31-2
53. Mr. Shinwell

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he can make a statement explaining what is the inflationary effect of increased wages, salaries and pensions.

Sir J. Anderson

I will glady make a statement on this subject on a more suitable occasion. Meantime, I would refer my hon. Friend to the White Paper on Price Stabilisation and Industrial Policy (Cmd. 6294), which was published in July, 1941, and in which the views of the Government on the subject raised in his Question were set out in some detail.

Mr. Shinwell

Would not my right hon. Friend consider analysing this very important question, and, having done so, sending a statement of his conclusions to the Secretary of State for War?

Mr. Bellenger

May I ask my right hon. Friend whether it was with his authority that the Secretary of State for War made a statement during the Debate on Service Pay and Allowances last week, that the increased cost asked for would cause inflation?

Sir J. Anderson

I do not want to be drawn into what I feel would be a fruitless attempt to deal adequately with this very large subject, within the limits of a Parliamentary Question. With regard to the supplementary question just put to me, I would say this—that, if some of the more extreme statements made in the course of the Debate in question were accepted and acted upon, the result, in my opinion, would definitely be inflationary.

Mr. A. Edwards

The Chancellor has implied that he would make a statement on a suitable occasion. Surely, when the Secretary for War has told the country that to do justice to the soldier would cause the wildest inflation, that is a suitable opportunity for a discussion?

Sir J. Anderson

I do not think that that was what my right hon. Friend said.

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