8. Mr. Philips Price
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the almost complete absence of British books and publications from countries with balance of payment difficulties such as some in the Middle East and Southern Asia, he will consider means by which a limited amount of sterling currency would be available to meet such conditions.
I would refer the hon. Member to the general statement on the Government Information Services by my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster on 3rd November.
Is it a fact that certain countries with balance of payments difficulties are literally without any English books or publications, particularly countries like Turkey and Pakistan? Since this is a very serious matter, cannot the Chancellor do something more than refer me to a Question which was answered some time ago?
I think that Answer was very relevant, but the problem which the hon. Gentleman raises is a serious one, and it is one to which attention is being given. My right hon. Friend pointed out that that precise aspect of the problem, with others, is at present under consideration, and that he will be making an announcement in due course.