HC Deb 29 January 1941 vol 368 c573W
Captain McEwen

asked the Minister of Economic Warfare to what extent imports into Portugal of the produce of their own colonies are being held up owing to the refusal of His Majesty's Government to issue navicerts until the Portuguese Government gives an assurance that nothing will be re-exported; and whether there is any reason to suppose that Portugal has, in the past, re-exported any considerable amount of her imports to our enemies?

Mr. Foot

As my right hon. Friend informed the House on 30th July, when navicerts were made compulsory, it is the policy of His Majesty's Government to grant navicerts on such a scale as to allow imports adequate for domestic consumption but not for re-export. This is being done in the case of Portugal. The Portuguese merchants are, however, anxious to ship larger quantities of colonial produce, for which Lisbon is the normal entrepot. The matter is being discussed with the Portuguese Government in the light of the fact that there have been considerable re-exports of such produce to the enemy by merchants in Portugal.