HC Deb 08 May 1962 vol 659 cc209-10
32. Mr. Hunter

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the amount of post-war credits repaid up to the latest convenient date; and what is the amount still unpaid.

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Sir Edward Boyle)

At 28th April, 1962, about £415 million had been paid and about £325 million was outstanding. Both these figures relate to the amount of credit originally created and they include no element of interest.

Mr. Hunter

Will the Financial Secretary ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer again to consider this matter, for many people have now been waiting nearly twenty years for repayment of their postwar credits?

Sir E. Boyle

I quite agree about the importance of this matter. My feeling is that in 1960 we probably went as far as we could in isolating hardship categories. I am bound to say that experience in dealing with hon. Members' correspondence convinces me that that is so. My right hon. and learned Friend did not feel that he would be justified in increasing the rate of payment of these credits this year, but of course we recognise that this is an obligation to be met.

Mr. Cleaver

Will my hon. Friend consider converting these credits into Premium Bonds?

Sir E. Boyle

That is another suggestion of which my right hon. and learned Friend will take note. I think that there are no satisfactory dodges for getting round this problem. It is a matter of some difficulty, because it has not been easy since the war to take a measure which stimulates the rate of consumption at home, but we should never forget that this is an obligation for the whole nation.

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