HC Deb 25 May 1949 vol 465 cc1261-2
48. Mr. Emrys Hughes

asked the Minister of Defence what is now the cost per head of the population of expenditure on the Defence Services and of armaments.

The Minister of Defence (Mr. A. V. Alexander)

The present annual cost of defence per head of population in the United Kingdom is about £15.

Mr. Emrys Hughes

Is the Minister aware of the statement, reported in "The Times," of to-day, made by the Prime Minister of New Zealand that £15 per head of the population is now spent on the defence of this country, compared with £7 in New Zealand, and does he realise that this amounts to a burden of 30s. a week on a working-class family?

Mr. Alexander

It is a very heavy burden to bear for defence, but there would be other burdens placed upon the nation subsequently if we did not bear our proper share.