HC Deb 05 December 1967 vol 755 cc1125-6
21. Mr. Tilney

asked the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs what requests he has received from developing countries of the Commonwealth to vary agreements made on their achieving independence.

Mr. Whitlock

The agreements to which the hon. Member refers could be of a number of kinds and may have been concluded many years ago. I therefore hesitate to give a categorical answer, but if the hon. Member will let me know what type of agreement or particular country he has in mind I will make further inquiries.

Mr. Tilney

Since various agreements covering public servants have been the responsibility of the Minister's predecessors, is he aware of the excessive income tax claim by the Government of Ceylon, the non-payment of pensions by the eastern region of Nigeria, and the claim of the Government of Tanzania for the British Government to be responsible for the pensions of Her Majesty's overseas civil servants? Will he consider taking on that responsibility and reducing aid accordingly?

Mr. Whitlock

The question whether the British Government should assume responsibility for pensions for British expatriate officers is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Minister of Overseas Development. The Tanzanian representations are at present under consideration by the Departments concerned. Although my right hon. Friend naturally has a close interest in the matter, it is primarily one of responsibility for the Minister of Overseas Development.