HC Deb 08 February 1967 vol 740 cc1629-30
12. Mr. Luard

asked the President of the Board of Trade what progress he has made in securing the removal of non-tariff barriers to the trade in motor cars within the European Free Trade Association.

Mr. Jay

The main problem is not non-tariff barriers, but the failure of certain E.F.T.A. countries to give cars the tariff advantages enjoyed by E.F.T.A. industrial goods generally. I shall continue to pursue this question vigorously, and I am happy to say that the Finnish Government have now announced their intention of reducing the tariff on E.F.T.A. cars from 14 per cent. to 7 per cent.

Mr. Luard

Does not my right hon. Friend agree that the exceptions that are made in the case of motor cars make nonsense of the whole concept of a Free Trade Area and that it is important in the interests of one of our most vital export industries to ensure that the same regulations are applied to motor cars as to other commodities?

Mr. Jay

Yes, Sir, I entirely agree. I would like to thank the Finnish Government here and now for what they have done. We still hope that they will do more. We are continuing the discussions with the Norwegian Government and I am glad to say that the Swedish Government share our view.