§ 112. Sir I. Fraser
asked the President of the Board of Trade the state of stocks and current and prospective production of shirts, ties, sports jackets, flannel trousers and pyjamas; and to what extent there has been exceptional diversion of these goods from home to overseas.
§ Sir S. Cripps
No comprehensive statistics of stocks and production of separate garments are available, but the Wholesale Textile Association collect sample figures of their members' sales and stocks of men's and boys' wear as a whole. The latest figures, which were published in the "Board of Trade Journal" for 11th January, 1947, showed that sales, by value, since the new coupons were released in August, up to the end of November, were over 50 per cent. above sales in the same period of 1945, while stocks also were slightly above those of the previous year. The low level of stocks is due mainly to the large increase in the clothing ration in August and the extensive issue of coupons to the men demobilised from the Forces, and not to any falling off of supplies. Production of all made-up garments depends on the 259W rate of cloth supply, and the December issue of the Monthly Digest of Statistics "shows the continuing expansion of deliveries of wool and non-wool cloth to the home trade during 1946.
The answer to the second part of the Question is, "None, Sir," but I would refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Members for Cheltenham (Mr. Lipson) and Ludlow (Lieut.-Colonel Corbett) on Tuesday last.