§ Mr. Whittaker
asked the President of the Board of Trade if it is intended to follow the policy laid down in Cmd. 6539 that Government surplus stores should normally be disposed of through the usual trade channels; who determines which firms shall receive the goods for disposal; will all traders receive a supply of these goods on application, or will the supply be restricted to a few firms; and if he will consider disposing of these goods at controlled prices direct to the public.
§ Mr. Ellis Smith
Yes, Sir. Unless there is good reason to the contrary, the various types of Government surplus stores which become available for home and export markets will be distributed as far as possible through the traders who normally handle goods of that type. The arrangements which have been worked out with the various trades differ according to the particular trade and the particular goods, but one of their purposes is to secure fair distribution from the point of view of traders as well as consumers. In general, it will be impracticable for the Government itself to sell direct to the public.