HC Deb 31 May 1956 vol 553 cc407-8
2. Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer in what Departments the proposed economies of £100 million will be made.

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Henry Brooke)

I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the reply which my right hon. Friend gave on 24th April to the hon. Members for Rugby (Mr. J. Johnson) and Workington (Mr. Peart).

Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

I do not think very much of that Answer. Cannot the right hon. Gentleman give an approximate idea of how much of this cut is coming from the defence programme and how much from other sources? Is he aware that if only the Chancellor would come down from his lofty plateau, he would be able to cut £200 or £300 million from the defence programme alone?

Mr. Brooke

It was, in fact, a very good reply. That is why I am repeating it this afternoon.

Mr. H. Wilson

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that nearly two months

of the financial year have gone, and that if this sum is to be realised as a genuine reduction in national expenditure and not simply the conventional underspending on defence, it is about time that the Chancellor informed the House what he has in mind?

Mr. Brooke

It certainly is to be realised, and my right hon. Friend will choose his own time for announcing it.