HC Deb 20 March 1917 vol 92 cc49-50W

asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) whether, in view of the proposed increase of Trade Commissioners from four to sixteen, steps will be taken to secure that those appointed have adequate knowledge of the Irish export trade, and that their activities will not be confined to the extension of purely British export trade; and (2) whether, in the formation of the proposed British Trade Corporation, steps will be taken to ensure that the interests of Irish trade and commerce are adequately represented, particularly in view of the fact that the volume of the Irish export trade is proportionately higher, per head of the population, than the export trade of Great Britain; and whether similar steps will be taken as regards the constitution of the proposed extension of the Information Bureau and Intelligence Department?


I can assure my hon. Friend that the needs of Irish export trade are being fully and carefully borne in mind in the organisation and extension of the Commercial Intelligence Department Department of the Board of Trade, and in the instructions to their Trade Commissioners overseas.

The objects of the British Trade Corporation will include the promotion of Irish trade equally with that of Great Britain. The Corporation will investigate projects of all kinds submitted to them for the development of British trade, including Irish trade, and will take such steps as appears possible to assist that development. The Information Bureau attached to the Corporation will also serve the needs of Irish trade as well as that of other parts of the Empire.