HC Deb 21 July 1953 vol 518 cc177-8
1 Mr. Ellis Smith

asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) what action he proposes to take on the report prepared by Her Majesty's Commercial Minister at Tokyo;

(2) if he has considered the comments made in the survey prepared by the Commercial Minister at Tokyo, with reference to the shipbuilding and machinery industries; and what particular action he proposes to take in this connection;

(3) if he has considered the references made to the pottery, cotton textile and rayon industries in the report prepared by the Commercial Minister in Tokyo, particularly with regard to the unfair practices, registering of designs, patents, etc.; and what action it is proposed to take.

The President of the Board of Trade (Mr. Peter Thorneycroft)

The Overseas Economic Survey of Japan is one of a series prepared by British officials in countries overseas to provide factual information on economic and commercial conditions in these countries. I am sure that those concerned in this country will study the sections mentioned by the hon. Member, as I have done, and consider how best to meet this competition. As regards unfair practices and copying of designs and patents, we are always ready to assist any firm or industry affected to take up any such cases with the Japanese authorities.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Will the President thank and congratulate our Minister in Tokyo for such a fine, informative report Does the right hon. Gentleman agree that it completely justifies the anxiety which we have expressed in the House over a long period; and does he not think that he should take the initiative on this report rather than leave it to us?

Mr. Thorneycroft

I certainly agree that this is a valuable contribution to a difficult problem.

Mr. Bottomley

Has this report been made available to Commonwealth Governments particularly those in Asia?

Mr. Thorneycroft

I think so.