§ 33. Mr. Nabarro
asked the Secretary for Overseas Trade, as representing the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, whether he will make a statement upon revision of export duties on jute and jute products by the Governments of India and Pakistan; and what effect this will have on supply and prices of jute and jute products, by his Department to industries in the United Kingdom, notably the carpet industry.
§ The Secretary for Overseas Trade (Mr. H. R. Mackeson)
The Indian export duty on hessian (including carpet yarn) which was increased in the autumn of 1950 from £26 5s. 0d. to £112 10s. 0d. per ton was reduced to £56 5s. 0d. per ton on 18th February of this year and to £20 12s. 6d. per ton from 7th May. There were also reductions in Pakistan prices for raw jute. In accordance with the policy of selling its purchases at replacement costs the Jute Control's selling prices of the main grades of jute were accordingly reduced by £50 per ton from 2nd April and by a further £40 from 4th June. Corresponding reductions were made in the Control's selling price of imported cloth and bags, and in the prices of home produced cloth and yarn, including carpet yarn.
On 1st July the Pakistan export duty on raw jute which was increased from £12 to £21 per ton last November was reduced to £9 per ton. The minimum price in Pakistan was also reduced. A reduction in the Jute Control's selling prices will be made as soon as possible after the effect of the Pakistan reductions can be seen.
§ Mr. Nabarro
In view of the very damaging effects on commercial and other relations between this country and India and Pakistan caused by the imposition of export duties on essential raw materials, will my hon. Friend institute negotiations with a view to ceasing this practice of imposing these export duties both in the case of India and Pakistan?