HC Deb 23 January 1962 vol 652 c18
26. Mr. Russell

asked the President of the Board of Trade which foreign countries treat United Kingdom exports more favourably than exports of countries which are not contracting parties to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.

The Minister of State, Board of Trade (Sir Keith Joseph)

The information is not available. Our main competitors are all contracting parties and our exports are treated in general as favourably as theirs.

Mr. Russell

Will my hon. Friend, therefore, say what is the advantage of belonging to this organisation compared with the sixty-odd countries which now do not belong to it?

Sir K. Joseph

The G.A.T.T. secures us fair treatment in overseas markets, safeguards us against unfair discrimination, is a forum for the discussion of fair practice, and is constantly seeking successfully to reduce tariffs. As a major international trading country, these are all to our advantage.