HC Deb 05 June 1947 vol 438 cc360-1
4. Mr. Spence

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will make arrangements to allow a larger proportion of high-class hosiery to be exported, especially to dollar exchange countries.

The President of the Board of Trade (Sir Stafford Cripps)

The amount of hosiery which can be exported is limited only by the necessity of honouring the clothing ration at home, and of an adequate production of Utility goods. Subject to this, every effort is made to assist manufacturers of high-class hosiery who wish to export, especially to hard currency markets.

Mr. Spence

Has the right hon. and learned Gentleman considered the possibility of getting a proportion of our utility requirements made by producers in ex-enemy countries, thereby freeing more of our home production for the export market?

Sir S. Cripps

That matter has been considered, and, as the hon. Member knows, we are getting some hosiery imported into this country.

Mr. Osborne

Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman encourage British exporters only to send high-grade goods to the United States, where they enjoy a good reputation, and not allow cheap goods to he sent out there?

Sir S. Cripps

We want high-quality goods sent everywhere.

Viscount Hinchingbrooke

is it not time the Government exported some of the utility goods and kept some of the better things here?

Sir S. Cripps

I think it is better to keep the utility goods which are wanted by the mass of the population, rather than the luxury goods required for export.