HC Deb 22 November 1920 vol 135 cc66-7W

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether any applications for licences to trade with Russia have been refused?


Apart from a few licences which have been granted for the exportation of medical supplies and similar articles sent by charitable societies for relief purposes, no licences are at present being granted for the exportation of goods to Russia. Very few applications have been made, but in response to occasional inquiries firms have hitherto been informed that, apart from the exception I have mentioned, licences were not being granted.


asked the President of the Board of Trade what the possibility of the opening up of trade with Russia is, and what quantity of eggs, butter, jam, wheat, timber, etc., they can exchange for the produce of this country; and if such trade would reduce prices and the cost of living and at the same time increase employment?


In reply to the first part of the question, I would refer to the statement made by the Prime Minister on 18th November. As regards the remainder, I have no information as to the quantities of the articles mentioned which would be available for export from Russia to the United Kingdom, but the amounts which were obtained before the War form no guide to what could be sent to us now. It will be a considerable time before produce of the kind referred to could be sent to us in any appreciable quantity, and certainly not in such quantity as could immediately affect prices.