HC Deb 12 March 1951 vol 485 cc1035-6
5. Mr. Fitzroy Maclean

asked the Minister of Supply how many British jet aircraft engines were sold to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in 1947; and of what make and design.

Mr. G. R. Strauss

Twenty-five Rolls Royce Nene Mark I and 30 Rolls Royce Derwent Mark V.

Mr. Maclean

Is the Minister aware that the M.I.G.15 jet engines being used against our troops in Korea are simply copies of the Rolls Royce Nene engines supplied to the Russians by his Department, and will he not now agree that the transaction in question was a blunder of the first order?

Mr. Strauss

I cannot personally make any comment about the first part of the question. The hon. Member is no doubt aware that these engines were no longer on the secret list when supplied to the Russians.

Air Commodore Harvey

Has the right hon. Gentleman any knowledge to what use Soviet Russia is putting these jet engines?

Mr. Strauss

I have not myself.

Mr. Henry Strauss

Can the Minister reconcile the policy of selling these jet engines to the Soviet Government with the terms of the note of His Majesty's Government handed to the Soviet Ambassador on 17th February last, in which His Majesty's Government complained that ever since the end of the war the Russian Government had disregarded the terms of the Anglo-Soviet Treaty and engaged in hostile acts?

Mr. Kirkwood

Arising from those supplementary questions, how do hon. Gentlemen happen to know that those engines which the Russians have are taken from the engines which we have sent to Russia?

An Hon. Member

It is a good guess.