§ Mr. HURD
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware of the hardships brought about in the Paul-ton (Somerset) and other centres of the boot and shoe industry by short time and unemployment; and what steps the Government can take to hasten the reopening of foreign markets for this British product?
§ Sir P. LLOYD-GREAME
I am aware that the boot and shoe industry has been passing through a period of depression. Every effort is being made to promote the expansion of the export trade in boots and shoes. The overseas officers of the Department of Overseas Trade have been informed on several occasions recently of the position of the industry, and any openings for exports which may be reported to that Department will at once be brought to the attention of firms 1105W concerned. Advantage can, of course, also be taken of the export credits scheme in regard to the countries to which it applies.