HC Deb 23 June 1949 vol 466 cc426-7
16. Mr. Platts-Mills

asked the President of the Board of Trade what special measures, comparable with those taken to develop exports to America, are proposed in respect of trade with the countries of Eastern Europe.

The President of the Board of Trade (Mr. Harold Wilson)

No comparable measures are proposed because the same considerations do not apply.

Mr. Platts-Mills

As it is now generally recognised that in our country we are facing an economic disaster unparalled in our history—[Laughter.] Let us remember that laughter from the Opposition—and as it is obvious that nothing can save us but a vast expansion of Eastern European—

Mr. Speaker

This supplementary question is not asking for information but is merely arguing, and that is not in Order at Question Time.

Mr. Platts-Mills

May I complete my question, Sir? Will the right hon. Gentleman not recognise that nothing can save us but some departure from the normal routine he follows in Eastern Europe, and some real attempt to get some trade going?

Mr. Wilson

We have no difficulty in providing sufficient exports to pay for all the goods we are able to import from Eastern Europe. That is not the position in the dollar area, and we therefore need special efforts to increase dollar exports.