HC Deb 11 May 1954 vol 527 cc985-6
3. Sir W. Smithers

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer in view of the strength of sterling in the foreign exchange market, if he will now take steps to make sterling freely convertible.

Mr. R. A. Butler

We continue working towards the necessary preconditions for sterling convertibility as set out in the Communiqué of the Commonwealth Economic Conference in 1952.

Sir W. Smithers

Instead of expressing pious hopes about this matter elsewhere, will my right hon. Friend give a courageous lead to the world, as our forefathers did, and make sterling freely convertible tomorrow morning as the biggest contribution possible to world recovery and prosperity?

Mr. Butler

I can assure my hon. Friend that I shall give a sensible lead. Whether it will be thought to be courageous or not, I cannot say.