§ 56. Colonel Crosthwaite-Eyre
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that £80 million has beers released from sterling balances to Egypt between 14th July, 1947, and 1st February, 1948; and how much of this sum has been made convertible, and released for payments to transferable accounts, respectively.
§ Mr. Jay
Yes, Sir. As regards the second part of the Question, I cannot distinguish between sterling released from Egyptian blocked balances and other sterling currently accruing to Egyptian No. 1 account. Any sums released from the balances are available for payment to Egyptian transferable accounts and thus are freely available for payments for current transactions to other transferable account countries. Exact details of Egyptian transfers to American account between 14th July and 20th August are not readily available, but the amount is small. Between 20th August, 1947, and 1st February, 1948, dollar facilities to the equivalent of £7.75 million were made available to Egypt against payment in transferable account sterling.
§ Colonel Crosthwaite-Eyre
As the Governor of the National Bank of Egypt made it clear that £80 million had been released from blocked sterling balances, is the hon. Gentleman aware that all this sum constitutes unrequited exports, and has to be borne by our own production, and as our treaties lay down a maximum of £55 million, can the hon. Gentleman say where the extra £25 million has come from?