HC Deb 27 April 1950 vol 474 cc1113-4
24. Captain Ryder

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will give an assurance that we have now stopped all exports of steel, tinplate and engineering equipment to the Soviet Union and her satellites.

Mr. H. Wilson

No, Sir. If the hon. and gallant Member is thinking of security considerations, I can assure him that there is already control over exports which we feel should be stopped on security grounds.

Captain Ryder

Is it not a fact that we badly need more steel for export to Canada, and that instead of the right hon. Gentleman blaming the steel industry for not doing enough to meet our requirements we would be better off if we stopped supplies to Russia and sent them to Canada?

Mr. Wilson

As far as I know, very little steel will be going to Russia this year. We hope to be able to supply all the needs of the Canadian market for steel this year, apart from one or two specialities. Any diversion of steel to Canada from other markets would make very little difference.

Mr. M. Philips Price

Would not my right hon. Friend agree that engineering exports to Russia are concerned with the exploitation of Russia's forests, and therefore assist us in the import of timber to this country?

Mr. Wilson

Yes, Sir, it is certainly timber-getting equipment.

Mr. Marples

Can the right hon. Gentleman assure the House that next year this country will supply Canada with all the steel she requires and asks for?

Mr. Wilson

I am very hopeful of doing that, but it is very difficult to say how much steel Canada will want to take until there is agreement between the trade and Canadian importers on the question of price. We are certainly looking forward to a big increase in our exports to Canada this year if Canada wants to have it.

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