HC Deb 19 February 1957 vol 565 c201
36. Mr. Sorensen

asked the President of the Board of Trade approximately to what extent exports from and imports to this country now suffer from delay in delivery owing to suspension of commerce through the Suez Canal.

Mr. Walker-Smith

The rerouting of shipping round the Cape led to a delay in arrival of certain imports in November and part of December. Arrivals in January, however, apart from oil supplies, were at a very high level, and it would appear that much of the initial delay has been made good. Taking the three months November-January together, the total volume of imports, excluding oil, showed little change from the average of the first ten months of 1956.

Export shipments up to the end of January have been only very slightly affected by shipping delays, although their delivery abroad will, of course, in certain cases take somewhat longer.

Mr. Sorensen

To what extent has the delay, such as it is, been reflected in the prices both of exports and of imports?

Mr. Walker-Smith

I cannot give the hon. Member a precise figure unless he is good enough to put that Question on the Order Paper.