HC Deb 16 November 1948 vol 458 cc191-2
27. Mr. Symonds

asked the Minister of National Insurance if any further arrangements have been completed in the last six months with Commonwealth and other Governments for reciprocity in National Insurance schemes; and with what countries are discussions now proceeding or contemplated.

The Minister of National Insurance (Mr. James Griffiths)

As I told the House in June a reciprocal agreement has been made this year with France. Agreements have since been concluded with New Zealand on family allowances, and with Eire on sickness and maternity benefit. Discussions are proceeding with Australia about family allowances, with Australia and New Zealand about pensions, and with Canada and Eire about unemployment benefit. It is hoped to start negotiations very shortly with The Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg.

Mr. Symonds

In making these arrangements, will the Minister give particular attention to the carry-over of insurance rights, so that if a person leaves this country and lives in another before that country has reciprocal arrangements he will not lose his insurance rights and have to start again?

Mr. Griffiths

The whole intention is to ensure that insurance rights are carried over from our country to the country with whom we have an agreement.

Mr. Turton

Do I understand that nothing has been done to extend the pension rights to Southern Ireland?

Mr. Griffiths

A person living in this country who qualifies for a pension in this country can have that pension paid in Eire if he goes there to live.