HC Deb 07 December 1950 vol 482 cc509-10
14. Mr. Harold Davies

asked the President of the Board of Trade what trade agreements are in existence or contemplated with Indonesia.

Mr. H. Wilson

I assume that my hon. Friend is referring to trade arrangements between Indonesia and the United Kingdom. Discussions took place in London in March, this year, with representatives of the Government of Indonesia, and the probable course of trade between the two countries during the calendar year 1950 was reviewed. The arrangements agreed for 1950 provided that foodstuffs and other goods would be available for export from Indonesia to the United Kingdom to the approximate value of £12 million, and that the Indonesian authorities would grant quotas for imports from the United Kingdom to a total of £7.2 million. The question of making corresponding arrangements for 1951 is under consideration.

Mr. Davies

While thanking my right hon. Friend for that reply, may I ask whether it is not a fact that Indonesia might be a possible source of supply for extra tea, so that ultimately we might abolish the tea ration?

Mr. Wilson

Tea is a question for my right hon. Friend the Minister of Food. We are, in fact, importing more foodstuffs from Indonesia now, and we hope to increase them still further.

Mr. W. Fletcher

Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether the agreement entered into as regards exports from this country to Indonesia has been carried out?

Mr. Wilson

I should want notice of that question in order to go into individual commodities, but the one or two representative commodities I have a note of here show that Indonesia has allowed more goods into that country than the quota promised.