HC Deb 12 March 1959 vol 601 cc1436-7
21. Mr. Edelman

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will make a statement on the forthcoming trade delegation to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

Sir D. Eccles

This morning I had a talk with the Soviet Ambassador. It will take us a little time to sort out all the questions involved in preparing for the Mission.

Mr. Edelman

Will the right hon. Gentleman give an assurance that any forthcoming negotiations on national affairs will not hold up the progress of sending such a delegation to the Soviet Union, particularly as the machine tool industry in this country is suffering greatly at the moment and a delegation of this kind could bring considerable benefit?

Sir D. Eccles

It is not for me to give such an assurance, but I can tell the hon. Gentleman that I am anxious to see an increase in trade.

Mr. Jay

Can the right hon. Gentleman say approximately how soon he thinks that this delegation will be able to start?

Sir D. Eccles

No, Sir, at present I cannot.