HC Deb 31 July 1956 vol 557 cc1146-7
53. Sir C. Taylor

asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether he will allow a small allocation of dollars to students for the purpose of visiting the United States of America and Canada.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury (Sir Edward Boyle)

Dollars are already provided in certain cases to enable students to pursue a course of study in the U.S.A. and Canada. But while there is no basic travel allowance for North America dollars cannot be granted for ordinary visits.

Sir C. Taylor

But now that Russia has said that she will encourage at great expense tourists from this country, would it not be a good thing for ordinary British people to have an opportunity of seeing what goes on in the United States and in Canada?

Sir E. Boyle

The question of a general travel allowance is a different one but, until our balance of payments position is more secure, we cannot afford to take on an additional commitment of this kind.

Mr. Donnelly

May I press the hon. Gentleman about this point? Is he aware that there is a point of no return if we refuse to give opportunities for, say, our engineering or architectural students to visit the United States of America, and that this may well be one of the best ways of investing what few dollars we have, so will he not reconsider this matter?

Sir E. Boyle

I cannot add to what I have said already on this point.