HC Deb 03 August 1965 vol 717 cc1256-7
14. Mrs. Shirley Williams

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the Ossola Report of the Study Group on the Creation of Reserve Assets is to be published; and when it will be published.

Mr. Callaghan

Yes, Sir, on 10th August next.

Mrs. Williams

In welcoming that reply, may I express the hope that this Report will enable hon. Members opposite to become rather better informed about the dangers of talking down sterling and of the acute dangers to the very fragile state of the world monetary system of any dangers to our currency?

Mr. Callaghan

The Ossola Report includes a technical analysis of the possibilities that exist for improving world liquidity. I agree with my hon. Friend that in present circumstances it is extremely important that everyone should do all within his power to ensure that the world monetary system is not made more fragile but is put on a more permanent and lasting basis.

Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

As this Report was ready about three months ago and has already been largely published in the Press, can the Chancellor tell us why it could not have been published earlier than this?

Mr. Callaghan

Because it is a Report to which the assent of all member countries must be given before it can be published and, therefore, the pace must be that of the slowest. It cannot be published before the last of the member countries gives agreement.

Mr. Lipton

To establish who are the patriots and who are not, will my right hon. Friend consider letting us have more details of our gold and dollar reserves and, in particular, who was responsible for the movement up and down in the gold and dollar reserves during the past month to which the figures relate?

Mr. Hogg

Does not the Chancellor agree that every time he asserts that patriotism is the monopoly of one side of the House, he undermines confidence in the country as a whole?

Mr. Callaghan

The right hon. and learned Gentleman's vehemence is at direct variance with his accuracy. I did not assert that and I do not assert it. It is within my experience, as I have said, that many hon. Members opposite have done their best to support the endeavour in which we are all engaged; but I am entitled to point out that there are hon. Members opposite who do the reverse. In present circumstances, this is not helpful either to the country or to sterling.