HC Deb 02 June 1954 vol 528 cc1257-8
5. Mr. Alport

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs why it has been decided to discontinue the Norwegian broadcasts in the British Broadcasting Corporation's Overseas Services.

Mr. Nutting

No such decision has been made.

Mr. Alport

Can my hon. Friend ensure that when this matter is considered the whole weight of his Department and of his right hon. Friend is put behind the continuance of these broadcasts, which make an important contribution to the good will which supports our export trade in Scandinavia, in general, and in Norway, in particular?

Mr. Nutting

Of course I will take into account what my hon. Friend has said, but at the same time I invite him to take into account the importance of making such savings as we can in order to make extensions elsewhere.

Mr. Ernest Davies

Can the hon. Gentleman say when a final decision is to be taken on this matter? A report was issued some time ago; the Government received it 11 months' ago, but they have still not made up their minds about it. Surely it is time that some decision was reached?

Mr. Nutting

The hon. Member is not quite correct in saying that the Government have not made up their minds. We have made up our minds and announced our intentions as regards the forthcoming financial year. The long-term implications of the report still require a certain amount of study, but the House will be informed of the conclusions of the Government as soon as possible.