HC Deb 18 April 1946 vol 421 cc2891-3
64. Sir P. Hannon

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether, in view of the dissolution of the League of Nations and its transfer to U.N.O., a statement will be issued showing the members of the League who continued to discharge their financial obligations during the war and those which have been in arrears; and if any action is contemplated to secure the payment of League contributions by member nations in default.

Mr. McNeil

As the answer is somewhat long I will, with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Sir P. Hannon

Would my hon. Friend say, just in a word, how many nations are in arrears?

Mr. McNeil

I prefer to say that nine nations have made some payment in respect of their arrears, but, of course, other contributions have been made.

Sir P. Hannon

Will any steps be taken to collect the arrears?

Mr. McNeil

That matter is engaging the attention of the Government and of other paying Members of the League.

Following is the answer:

A statement showing the position members of the League of Nations in respect of their contributions at the end of 1945 has been placed in the Library of the House. Since the preparation of this statement, the question of the collection of arrears has engaged the continuous attention of the competent organs of the League and of the Assembly itself at the present session. Thirty-seven member States contributed during the war years, and 13 of these were up-to-date in their payments at the opening of the Assembly, namely:

South Africa, India,
Australia, The Netherlands,
Belgium, Norway,
The United Kingdom New Zealand,
Canada, Switzerland,
Denmark Czechoslovakia.

Nine other States have made payment in respect of arrears, and II others are negotiating arrangements for the same purpose.

I should like to take this opportunity of stating that from 1919, the date of the inception of the League, to the end of 1945, no less than 90 per cent. of the budgeted contributions have been received, something over 4½ per cent. cancelled and about 1½ per cent. consolidated for payment over a period of years.

The countries which have made payment during the course of this year are:

Bolivia, Nicaragua,
China, Portugal,
Finland, Turkey,
Honduras, Uruguay.

The countries negotiating agreements are:

Argentina, Greece,
The Dominican Republic Iran,
Egypt, Panama,
Ecuador, Poland,
France, Yugoslavia.

The countries which have not initiated any negotiations are:

Afghanistan, Latvia.
Albania, Liberia,
Bulgaria, Lithuania,
Chile, Peru,
Columbia, Rumania,
Estonia, Siam,
Ethiopia, Venezuela.