§ Sir H. NIELD
asked the President of the Board of Trade if he can state the number of Ford motor cars which have been imported from the United States of America since the signature of the Armistice; and whether he is aware that these imports will seriously interfere with the British motor trade and make it difficult for manufacturers to give employment to their workpeople?
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
Any licences which have been or are being given by the Board of Trade have been granted entirely on the recommendation of the Ministry of Munitions on the understanding that the cars, or parts thereof, were required to be imported solely for Government purposes. I am now informed that there was an arrangement between the Ministry and the Ford Company that the latter should hold a stock of chassis in this country against the sudden and urgent requirements reported by the War Office from time to time. It was part of the arrangement that if any part of the stock of chassis were not required by Government, the company were to be at liberty to dispose of the balance as they pleased after the cessation of hostilities. There remain nearly 1,000 chassis sets to be imported and so 1623W disposed of, but I am informed the importations constitute only one-third of the value of the chassis, the remaining two-thirds being the product of British material and labour.