HC Deb 02 March 1954 vol 524 cc992-3
21. Mr. Snow

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he has considered the French plan, made at the Eighth Session of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, in October, 1953, to reduce tariff levels by 30 per cent.; and whether he will make a statement on the policy of Her Majesty's Government with regard to this proposal.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

In the forthcoming review of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade the contracting parties will consider whether to make any change in the procedures for negotiating reductions of tariffs, and the plan to which the hon. Member refers will be considered in that context. I am not at present in a position to comment on it. Meanwhile I consider that the reduction of quantitative restrictions in Europe is an equally urgent and no less important task.

Mr. Snow

I agree wholeheartedly with what the right hon. Gentleman says in the last part of his reply, but is there not a strong case for giving the plan for a general reduction in tariffs very careful consideration?

Mr. Thorneycroft

All such plans deserve proper consideration.