HC Deb 06 November 1961 vol 648 c594
10. Mr. P. Browne

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will now consider setting up an interdepartmental committee to examine the need for co-ordinating the food market, for limiting imports and for operating effective anti-dumping measures in the interests of both the British farmer and consumer.

Mr. Soames

The negotiations with the members of the European Economic Community have an obvious bearing on all these issues and what my hon. Friend has in mind is already being examined inter-departmentally in that context. I do not think it would help to set up a separate committee.

Mr. Browne

While I understand that, does my right hon. Friend not consider that now is the time for the responsibility for the control of imports, whether by anti-dumping legislation or straightforward control, to be vested in a committee in his Ministry instead of it being the joint responsibility of the Board of Trade and the Ministry of Agriculture?

Mr. Soames

The anti-dumping legislation to which my hon. Friend refers is, of course, the only piece of legislation on the Statute Book. This covers all the trade of the country, and the responsibility for implementing it must inevitably rest with the President of the Board of Trade.