HC Deb 11 May 1949 vol 464 c1837
21. Mr. Gammans

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what is the policy of the Governments of the Federation of Malaya and of Singapore regarding the importation of Japanese textiles.

Mr. Creech Jones

The policy is governed by the trade arrangement between sterling area countries and the Supreme Commander, Allied Powers, in Japan, for the period July, 1948, to June, 1949. An import quota for cotton piece goods has been established within the framework of this arrangement, and particulars of allocations have been notified to importers.

Mr. Gammans

Does that mean that the interests of Lancashire have been safeguarded, or are no limits likely to be imposed on the importation of Japanese textiles?

Mr. Creech Jones

I do not think that the interests of Lancashire are involved at all in this arrangement.

Mr. W. Fletcher

Contrary to what the right hon. Gentleman has just said, is it not a fact that the interests both of Lancashire and the distributing entrepôt in Singapore are being seriously damaged by imports of Japanese grey cloth which is processed here and sent abroad? It is creating great competition with Lancashire.

Mr. Creech Jones

These goods are desperately required in that part of the world.

Mr. Paton

Is it not also a British interest that Japanese people should live?