§ Lieut. - Commander Joynson Hicks
asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) whether he is aware that the shortage of advertising space in newspapers is a deterrent to the speedy reconstruction of our trade and industry; and whether he will consider releasing some of the available reserves of newsprint to facilitate the exchange of labour and commodities;1065W
- (2) whether he is aware that by resuming out pre-war imports of news print from countries outside the dollar area the present amount available for consumption would be increased by one- third; and why he does not adopt this course;
- (3) why it is now necessary to keep in reserve five and a quarter months' supply of newsprint when before the war a reserve of two and a half months' supply was adequate.
§ Sir S. Cripps
I can assure the hon. Member that the shortage of advertising space is not acting as a deterrent to the reconversion of industry. It is not possible in view of the present position of foreign exchange to import newsprint from those countries where it is available. The present reserves are rather more than the minimum essential but it would be unwise to increase consumption temporarily while there was no prospect of increased supplies to maintain the increased consumption.