HC Deb 25 October 1954 vol 531 cc1598-9
51. Mr. Jay

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will now put forward proposals for the relaxation of strategic restrictions on exports to China.

63. Mr. H. Wilson

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will now take steps to propose the removal of the United Nations embargo on exports to China imposed on 18th May, 1951, pursuant to the resolution condemning Chinese participation in the Korean war.

Sir Anthony Eden

This is an important subject to which Her Majesty's Government are giving careful thought, but I have no statement to make at present.

Mr. Jay

As it is well over a year since the Korean war ended, and several months since the fighting stopped in Indo-China, does not the Foreign Secretary think that it is time to end the restrictions imposed by Her Majesty's Government?

Sir A. Eden

The right hon. Gentleman knows the terms of this embargo and how it originated. I can assure him that I have in mind the considerations which perhaps he has in mind. I do not wish to say any more today.

Mr. Wilson

Since successive Government spokesmen, both here and in another place, have attributed the embargo specifically to the Korean fighting, and then the late Minister of State said that it was tied up with Indo-China, will the right hon. Gentleman recognise that these successive reasons for the maintenance of this boycott have now ended, and would he specifically say that it does not require a peace settlement in Korea before the ban can be lifted?

Sir A. Eden

The right hon. Gentleman knows very well that this is not an issue in which we only are concerned, but that it is an international issue of considerable—what shall we say?—explosive possibilities. I think that we should be wise to handle it with caution. Though I fully understand the force of the question, I would rather not say any more today.