HC Deb 16 December 1952 vol 509 cc1193-4
42. Lieut.-Colonel Schofield

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is aware that only £23,973 value of cotton yarns was accepted for import into the Argentine against a quota of £1,500,000 agreed under the Anglo-Argentina Trade Agreement for the year 1951–52; whether a quota has yet been agreed for 1952–53; and what steps he proposes to take to ensure that agreements made are implemented.

Mr. Mackeson

The figure of £1½ million was an estimate by the Argentine Government of likely requirements of cotton yarn; but import licences had been withheld owing, I understand, to shortage of sterling. As regards trade for 1952–53, negotiations are still proceeding and I should not think it desirable to discuss progress on particular matters.

Lieut.-Colonel Schofield

Is my hon. Friend aware that although this country is still the Argentine's second best customer, only 15 packages of United Kingdom cotton yarn were accepted from this country by Argentina during the first eight months of this year, as against 65,762 packages from other textile producing countries, and will he impress this point on the Argentine authorities?

Mr. Mackeson

Yes, Sir.

Mr. Bottomley

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that Her Majesty's Government alone are the only Government satisfied with the way in which these negotiations are proceeding, and is he also aware that business and the public generally are thoroughly dissatisfied?