HC Deb 24 April 1956 vol 551 cc1597-8
12. Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer how far the Government plan to cut Government spending by £100 million makes allowance for increases in current cost of maintaining British forces in Germany.

14. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer to what extent the proposal to save £100 million on the Estimates, allows for the recovery from the German Government of some or all of the costs of maintaining British forces in Germany.

Mr. H. Macmillan

As explained in the Statement on Defence, 1956, the current Estimates, to which the new economy drive relates, assume the receipt of £50 million from the Federal German Government. Negotiations with that Government on the payment of support costs after 6th May, 1956, are now in progress and I cannot anticipate their outcome.

Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

Is it not clear that if the Germans stand on the strict letter of the Paris Agreements, at least £50 million of the Chancellor's bonds has gone down the drain already? What will he do about that?

Mr. Macmillan

That is a very unwise supplementary question in view of the fact that these negotiations are now proceeding.

Mr. Fernyhough

In view of the fact that in addition to probably not paying anything towards the cost of our four divisions, the German Government have now decided that all British Service men living in requisitioned property may have to get out by 1st May, would the Chancellor not agree that this will be an added burden?

Mr. Macmillan

All these matters are now the subject of negotiation, and I must adhere to my reply that I do not propose to make a statement while these negotiations are in progress.